Flooding is the most frequent and costly natural hazard in the United States. Floods are generally the result of excessive precipitation, and can be classified under two categories: flash flood, the product of heavy localized precipitation in a short period over a given location: and general floods, caused by precipitation over a longer time period and over a given river basin.
The City of Rossville is located in close proximity to Cross Creek and the Kansas River. Various floods have hit Rossville in the past. Many times, flooding along Cross Creek within Rossville can be predicted in advance, giving ample warning for preparation and evacuation. To monitor the levels for Cross Creek you can access NOAA map or (cross creek levels tab on this website). You will also see regular interruption on local radio and television stations advising you of the situation. In addition information will be put on the City of Rossville and Rossville Police Department facebook pages.
Another tool to assist you in preparing for a possible flood event is to view the Cross Creek flood inundation map by clicking the tab located at the top of the NOAA map or (cross creek levels tab on this website). By using the inundation map you can view the effects of different inundation levels on a specific address.
The National Weather Service is a great source for complete weather forecast and weather related information.
For information on the difference between a flood watch and a flood warning and addition information on flood safety before, during and after a flood event visit the NWS Flood Safety Home Page
The following common sense guidelines can help you from the dangers of flooding:
- Do not drive through a flooded area. More people drown in cars than anywhere else. Do not drive around barriers.
- Do not walk through flowing water. Currents can be deceptive. Six inches of water can knock you off your feet.
- Stay away from power lines and electrical wires. If your house is about to be flooded, turn off the power at the service box. Electrical current can travel through water. Electrocution is the 2nd leading cause of death during floods.
- Be alert to gas leaks. Turn off the gas to your house before it floods. If you smell gas, report it to emergency services or your gas company. Do not use candles, lanterns or open flames if you smell gas or are unsure if your gas has been shut off.
- Keep children away from the flood waters, ditches, culverts and storm drains. Flood waters can carry unimaginable items that have dislodged themselves. Culverts may suck smaller people into them rendering them helpless.
- Clean everything that has been wet. Flood water will be contaminated with sewage and other chemicals which pose severe health threats.
- Look out for animals, especially snakes. Small animals that have been flooded out of their home may seek shelter in yours.
- Do not use gas engines, such as generators, or charcoal fires indoors during power outages. Carbon monoxide exhaust can pose serious health hazards.
PROPERTY PROTECTION MEASURES
If your property is susceptible to flooding, there are many flood damage reduction measures you can employ.
- Watertight seals can be applied to brick and block walls to protect against low-level flooding.
- Utilities such as heating and air conditioning systems, water heaters and other major appliances can be elevated to higher floors in the structure or on raised platforms.
- Temporary measures such as moving furniture and other valuables to higher floors or sandbagging exterior openings will also help.
- Elevating or relocating the entire structure may also be a feasible option.
DRAINAGE SYSTEM MAINTENANCE
As simple as it may sound, simply keeping smaller ditches and streams free of debris can dramatically improve the run-off capacity of low-lying areas, as well as greatly reduce the occurrence blockage that significantly contributes to flooding. It is illegal to dump materials into a ditch or required waterway and violators may be fined. If you see someone in the act of dumping or see debris in one of our watercourses, please contact City Hall at (785) 584-6155.