Climatic Perspective on the 1993 Mississippi R. Flood

by Kenneth E. Kunkel, Illinois State Water Survey, Champaign, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Hydraulic Engineering


The 1993 summer flooding in the Upper Mississippi River Basin was the most devastating flood of modern times with damage estimates in the range of 15-20 billion dollars. The paper describes the hydroclimatic causes of the flood in the context of historical frequencies of heavy rainfall events. The analysis was based on two data sets: One is the daily summary of the day precipitation data set obtained by the National weather service cooperative observers and archived at the National Climatic Data Center. The second data set are the monthly precipitation values calculated for the climate divisions. The record flooding in the Mississippi River Basin is explained in large by the observed precipitation due to the record number of rainfall during the summer.

Subject Headings: Floods | Climates | Rivers and streams | Weather forecasting | Precipitation | Data analysis | Information management | Flood frequency | Mississippi | United States | Mississippi River

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