Atlanta, Georgia

Historical Floods

It has been ten years since the historic flooding of Atlanta, GA. Heavy rainfall beat the region from September 15 to the 22nd in 2009. Experts say that the combination of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean were significant contributing factors. The topography of the area also played a vital role, resulting in more rain than the local watersheds could handle.  In less than 24 hours, the area experienced more than 20 inches of water. The most torrential rainfall was September 19, with some areas receiving up to 3.7 to 5 inches of rain. The peak occurred on the 20th and the 21st.

Flooding History in Georgia

The Georgia area has experienced other notable floods including: 1- In 1886, there was flooding in Rome, northwest Georgia. No figures exist on the number of fatalities, injuries, and dollar damage. 2- The Chattahoochee River flood of 1919 resulted in three fatalities and dollar damage over one million dollars. 3- The 1938 Whitestone flood in Whitestone, Georgia, where thirteen people lost their lives and the dollar damage was thousands of dollars. 4- The tropical storm Alberto flooding in July 1994, where thirty-three people lost their lives. The flood damage cost approximately 750 million dollars.

2009 Flood Damage Reports

There were incidences of flash flooding resulting in swollen river basins four weeks after that. There was massive flood damage due to the rain resulting in the loss of millions of shillings. The impact on the community in terms of livelihoods and damage to homes and businesses was hard to fathom. Initial estimates put the dollar damage at $250 million, but the figure eventually went up to $500 million. Over 20000 people no longer had a place to call home, and ten people lost their lives. Rescue operations kicked into high gear because many people had to move from their homes. The Red Cross played a significant role by setting up emergency shelters for some of the evacuees. Significant interstates, including 1-85 and 1-20, had to remain closed for some time. The Chattahoochee River had so much water that it entirely covered the Interstate 285.