Public Information Statement
Issued by NWS Portland, ME

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NOUS41 KGYX 161048
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PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GRAY ME
650 AM EST THU MAR 16 2017

The National Weather Service has declared the week of March
13th through 17th Flood Awareness Week in Maine and New
Hampshire, as well as in the remainder of New England.

...SAFETY AND PREPAREDNESS TIPS...

In the United States, flooding is the top storm-related
killer, on average, claiming the lives of about 90 people
annually.  More than half of those deaths are the result of
people attempting to drive through flooded roadways.
Victims are usually either trapped in their cars or they
drown as they are washed downstream by raging flood waters.
In addition, about another quarter of the deaths are caused
by people attempting to walk or swim through flood waters,
or falling into the water.  Always keep a safe distance from
rapidly moving water and never stand on a bridge to watch
the raging waters below.

The vast majority of the deaths are preventable.  Here are
some flood safety and preparedness tips that could save your
life.

* Never drive a car into a flooded roadway!  As little as
  2 feet of water will float most cars and can cause them to
  be washed off the roadway.  Water levels are often
  difficult to judge and you may not be able to tell if a
  roadway is already washed away.

* Always remember, if you come upon a flood area,   TURN
  AROUND, DON`T DROWN!  It could save your life.

* Be especially cautious at night when darkness makes it
  difficult to see flood dangers.  If driving, slow down so
  you have more time to react to potential hazards.

* Keep a safe distance from rapidly flowing water.  Monitor
  children closely when flowing water is nearby.

* During heavy rainfall events or during times of rapid snow
  melt, do not camp or park in flood-prone areas.

* Monitor the latest forecast and listen for any alerts for
  your area to warn you of impending hazardous situations

* Keep abreast of water levels and forecast water levels.
  Move to higher ground if flooding is expected.

* Be alert to any rapid rises or falls in the river levels.
  A rapid rise in a river level may indicate that an ice jam
  has formed downstream of you.  In contrast, a rapid fall
  in a river level may indicate that an ice jam has formed
  upstream from you.  If an upstream ice jam breaks up
  rapidly, flash flooding of downstream areas can occur very
  quickly.

If you live along a small river or stream:

* Know your area`s flood risk.

* Keep appraised of current weather conditions for your
  local area including the latest FORECAST and any FLOOD
  WATCHES, WARNINGS, or STATEMENTS.

* Monitor river or stream levels and be prepared to seek
  higher ground, if conditions warrant.

* Report any flooding to the appropriate authorities.

* If ordered to evacuate, do so immediately.

For additional information, call your local National Weather
Service Office.

$$

JENSENIUS/HAWLEY
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
GRAY, MAINE

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