Iowa Flood Information System a useful resource


An image of the Iowa Flood Information System
An image from the Iowa Flood Information System

With wet conditions persisting and more rain predicted, a tool created by the Iowa Flood Center at the University of Iowa can provide useful information to Iowa cities and residents.

The Iowa Flood Information System (IFIS) draws data from hundreds of US Geological Survey and IFC gauges, radar, and National Weather Service forecasts. Using these tools, IFIS is able to calculate flood risk, provide directions based on current weather conditions, view stream levels at over 300 locations, and much more — all in real time.

The interactive application is based on a Google Maps interface, allowing users to view a wide range of data specific to their communities. It is also available on tablets and mobile devices.

The goal of the IFIS is to educate communities and individuals on flood risks in order to minimize future damages.

To learn more about the IFIS and try it yourself, click here.

On the Radio: Iowa Flood Information System


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This week’s On the Radio segment covers the Iowa Flood Information System website that offers many features to help Iowans prepare for and better understand floods. Listen to the audio below, or continue reading for the transcript.

Continue reading

The Iowa Flood Center offers tools to track local flood conditions


664px-FEMA_-_44906_-_Flood_Responders_in_Iowa

With the abundant rain in Iowa over the past couple of weeks, it’s important to remember that the Iowa Flood Center offers tools for tracking flood conditions.

Make sure to check out the Iowa Flood Information System (IFIS). This online tool allows you to track rainfall and stream levels across Iowa.

Iowa Flood Center looks for donations to add flood sensors


The Iowa River. Photo by Shan’s Photostream, Flickr.

The Iowa Flood Center is asking for donations in order to add more stream-stage sensors around Iowa.

These sensors collect real time data about stream height, which is then displayed on the Iowa Flood Information System. This data helps with the monitoring of flood potential in different watersheds.

The Iowa Flood Center has already placed 129 of these sensors around the state. With the help of the donations, they hope to add 100 more.

Read more about the sensors and how to donate here.

Video: Krajewski describes Iowa Flood Center’s resources


Nick Thomas, a PhD student who works with the Iowa Flood Center, using IFIS. Photo by Joe Bolkcom.

The Iowa Flood Center has released a video of their director Witold Krajewski presenting the flood center’s current resources.

In the presentation, Krajewski describes their online Iowa Flood Information System (IFIS), and how anyone can use it to track water levels in nearby watersheds. He also discusses the flood center’s development and deployment of stream stage sensors in watersheds, and how these sensors collect data for IFIS.

Watch the presentation here.

Iowa Flood Center expands stream sensor network


The Iowa River. Photo by Alan Light, Flickr.

The Iowa Flood Center has utilized the state’s unusually mild start to winter by installing an additional 50 electronic stream stage sensors across Iowa.

These sensors, 100 of which have been installed throughout the state, use sonar to measure the distance to the water’s surface and determine water levels. They then report this data to the Flood Center’s headquarters at the University of Iowa every 15 minutes.

This data allows for real-time monitoring of water levels in Iowa’s rivers and streams, thus improving the center’s ability to predict flooding.

Check out the data produced by these sensors at the Iowa Flood Information System website, which provides a detailed map of Iowa flood conditions, along with forecasts, visualizations, inundation maps, and other flood related information.

For more information on the Iowa Flood Center’s Steam Stage Sensor Program, visit the center’s website here.

On the Radio: New mapping system prepares Iowans for floods


Photo by Joe Germuska, Flickr.

Listen to this week’s radio feature here.  It discusses a new online tool, provided by the Iowa Flood Center, that will help you keep track of flooding in your area.

In recent years repeated flooding has devastated Iowa communities. Thankfully, a new online resource is available to help Iowans prevent future flood damage. Continue reading