Causes and Consequences of Floods

flood damage

A flood is more than just that little pool of water that gathers around your house. It is more than the gently overflowing drainage in your area. Even though those are some of the indications of flooding, it is much more serious than that.

Taking a glance at what Wikipedia has to say, flooding is described as the ‘submerging’ of an area of ‘usually dry land’ underwater. Of course, that is not something that happens every day.

Floods do not always bring concerns with them – as is the case with the two leading scenarios presented. When they do though, the problems can lead to as much as a loss of lives. That is when they become hazards.

Causes of Flooding

Flooding does not just come to be of its own volition. Looking at some areas prone to this environmental hazard, the talking points when it comes to causes are:

1. Rains

Floods are a literary representation of the saying ‘When it rains, it pours.’

Rains don’t single-handedly cause floods though. Otherwise, we would have floods everywhere whenever there is rain.

What causes the flood is usually a combination of rainfall with a poor/ inadequate drainage system, causing the excess water to flow on land rather than seep off via the appropriate means.

2. River Overflows

Areas with rivers are usually no strangers to severe cases of flooding. When it rains, there is a tendency for the water levels to rise. Since the river is incapable of holding all the water, it seeks help from the neighboring lands by shelling off the excess volume to them.

The result is a submersion of large volumes of land underwater. In other words, flooding occurs.

3. Strong Winds

It is almost impossible to believe that winds can transport water but that is the cause of most flooding problems in coastal areas. When strong coastal winds blow, they tend to move water from the sea onto normally dry land.

The case is made even worse when the winds carry rain with them too. Left unchecked for long, it is not uncommon that this leads to a more severe case dubbed ‘tsunami’.

Constant melting of the ice caps also does a lot to contribute to the water level, causing water bodies to encroach onto land.

Perhaps the least common but equally serious cause of the flooding is dam breakages.

It would almost be rude to the subject if we don’t include the effects of human activities on the promotion of flooding. Deforestation, land clearing, and river embankments are just some of the ways we also contribute to the risks of flooding.

Effects of Flooding

There are no good floods. Whenever and wherever they happen, they usually leave devastating consequences in their wake. For more clarity, these effects have been grouped as follows:

1. Personal

Floods have been recorded to displace people and animals from their homes overnight. Severe cases of flood do not just affect the roads but get into houses too, soaking and destroying everything in sight.

That is not to mention the increment in the rate of water-borne diseases since people will have to wade through the water to get out. If necessary, contact a flood repair company to quickly dry the affected area through flood repair equipment. AlorAir®Storm Elite dehumidifier and Alorair Zeus Extreme Axial air mover are the first choices for fast drying.

Sadly, floods have also been the cause of a handful of deaths. People get dragged away by the strong currents while others succumb to infections that they got via the water.

2. Environmental

Flooding destroys the ecosystem on more levels than one.

Areas, where agricultural activities abound, will suffer leaching of the soil and depletion of the general soil structure, leading to lower yield.

Even if the area is not used for cultivation, depletion of the topsoil leads to a degradation of the general structural integrity of the ground there.

On top of that, insects that are not naturally in an area can get introduced to such places. It needs no telling how that upsets the balance of things and causes the environment to start adapting to a new element in what was an otherwise stable system.

3. Economic

Factoring all the above effects into one, it won’t be hard to see how economic effects will come to the fore.

For one, no investor will be willing to put up their business where it is likely to suffer from such environmental hazards as flooding. An agricultural area will suffer a large hit in its production capacity and quality. Considering residential areas, a flooding-prone area won’t look good in the eyes of home seekers, driving down real estate value.

That, of course, is not having mentioned the resources that go into every rebuilding operation when the flood takes its leave.

Wrap Up

The fact that flooding is partially/ completely manageable means that most of the effects are a direct cause of human actions/ inactions. When an area is affected by a flood, it is only wise that the people be made to know the short and long-term effects, what they can do to prevent/ manage future occurrences, and other best practices in times of flooding.

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