Hydrologic Products

Flood Watch: Flood Watches are issued when flooding is possible in the watch area usually within 36 hours. This is most often issued when heavy rains are expected to fall on saturated ground, but can also be posted during ice jams or possible dam breaks. Flood Watches are also used to indicate when conditions are favorable for river flooding. Conditions necessary are focused on the larger scale heavy or persistent rains, and their effect on rivers and streams. Flood Watches are followed up by headlining in the Zone Forecast Product. Updates on Flood Watches are transmitted under Flood Statements.

Flash Flood Warning: Flash Flood Warnings are the most serious short-term hydrologic warning product. Rapid flooding that poses a threat to life and property warrants a Flash Flood Warning. Generally, flooding from a heavy rain event, over a small area, during a short period of time is the most likely situation when a Flash Flood Warning will be issued. Updates to the Flash Flood Warning are transmitted under Flash Flood Statements. Flash Flood Warnings are 6 hours in length or less and can be issued for water washing out roads or bridges and flooding on ungaged rivers or streams. Ice jams or dam breaks may also cause a Flash Flood Warning to be issued.

Flash Flood Statements: Flash Flood Statements are issued to update Flash Flood Warnings, as new information becomes available, and can include useful information such as road closures, areas affected, etc., and what is expected. The Flash Flood Statement is also used to cancel a Flash Flood Warning. The Flash Flood Statement is also used to update or cancel a Flood Watch.

Flood Warning: If a flooding event is expected to continue beyond 6 hours, then the warning can either be reissued, or issued as a general Flood Warning depending on the area involved and the extent of the flooding. A general Flood Warning is issued when widespread flooding is expected over an area not necessarily associated with river flooding, or where an ungaged creek or stream normally takes longer than 6 hours to recede. This product can also serve to reinforce a River Flood Warning when serious flooding threatens heavily populated areas. These warnings require frequent updating as conditions warrant, and can be updated or canceled by issuing a Flood Statement.

River Flood Warning: When a river is forecast to exceed it's flood stage, a Flood Warning will be issued. A Flood Warning is designed to forecast the river stage at the forecast point along a particular stretch of river, but the warning actually is valid for the entire reach of the river, including the area between the forecast points.

Flood Statement: Flood Statements are issued to update or cancel Flood Warnings that are already in effect for general countywide floods. This statement is also used to update River Flood Warnings to add new forecast data as well as information about the areas that have been inundated by flood waters. The Terminating Flood Statement is used to cancel a River Flood Warning. Flood Statements are also used to issue, update or cancel the Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory (discussed next). When rivers levels are below flood stage, River Statements may be issued.

Urban and Small Stream Flood Advisory: Issued as a Flood Statement, when flooding of small streams, streets and low-lying areas, such as railroad underpasses and urban storm drains is occurring or expected. If only urban or small stream flooding is expected but not both, the product can also be titled either Urban Flood Advisory or Small Stream Flood Advisory. Updates or cancellations for these advisories are also issued as a Flood Statement.

River Statement: River Statements are issued when significant rises are expected on rivers, however they are not expected to exceed flood stage. Minor lowland overflows are possible.

Hydrologic Outlook: This product is issued when widespread, significant flooding is possible usually beyond 36 hours. Since the event would be relatively far out in the future, the product would contain a general summary of anticipated conditions. In shorter time frames, Flood Watches would be issued with more specific information and higher detail.

Hydrologic Summary: This is a river summary of various rivers and creeks in central and southeast Kansas, indicating flood stage, the latest river stage height and 24 hour change. The product is issued once daily around 10 am LST.

Water Supply Outlook: This product is rarely issued but would contain weekly information during drought situations such as extended stream flow forecasts, drought severity and soil moisture indices and long term temperature and precipitation forecasts.

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