Water Resources of the United States

PROJECT ALERT NOTICE (NE) South Platte Flooding in Nebraska

Date: Sat, 21 Sep 2013 11:52:34 EDT

Summary: USGS NEWSC South Platte Flood Response.

Update on flooding for Nebraska, September 21, 2013

Western Nebraska (South Platte River Basin)

Flood waters from the South Platte River Basin entered Nebraska on Sept. 18 The flood should be approaching crest of 13.9ft at South Platte at North Platte today.

NEWSC field staff have stood down for the day, but we plan to have two crews in the field on Sunday doing followup measurements at South Platte at Roscoe and assisting the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources at some of their downstream sites.

One USGS staffer is been monitoring flows at Roscoe, NE which appears to be slowly rising again. This is the first USGS streamgage in Nebraska on the South Platte River and one that was briefly shutdown due to the sequester. The Twin Platte Natural Resources District is providing funding for the gage through the end of the fiscal year. All USGS measurements except two have been made with hydroacoustics. The USGS will be providing discharge measurement assistance to the Nebraska Department of Natural Resources at several State gages along the South Platte and Platte Rivers, and well as assisting the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program in discharge measurements. The crew at Roscoe has made 7 measurements on the rising limb of the flood and 2 on the crest. The is holding steady with very little change over the past two days.

The Roscoe streamgage has been in operation since 1982 (http://waterdata.usgs.gov/ne/nwis/uv/?site_no=06764880&PARAmeter_cd=00065,00060) The previous peak was 11.29 ft at a discharge of 20,100 cfs in 1995. The gage set a record for stage (12.20 ft, but not for discharge. Crew measured near the peak at 17,700 cfs and a gage height of 12.12 ft.

Five South Platte and Platte River stage-discharge ratings were extended to assist the National Weather Service.

NEWSC put together a Water Quality Flood Response Plan for the Office of Water Quality and is coordinating with Colorado.

NEWSC Director, Bob Swanson is meeting daily with the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency Emergency Operations Center Planning Committee.

A News release is not planned. The field crews have met with both television and newspaper media.

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