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How UCLA flooded on a sunny day

Last Tuesday afternoon, a 30-inch water main burst beneath Sunset Boulevard on the northern edge of the UCLA campus, creating a geyser dozens of feet high. It took more than three hours to shut off the flow of water; by then, eight to ten million gallons of water had been released. The water flooded the UCLA campus, damaging the newly renovated Pauley Pavilion and trapping hundreds of cars in underground parking structures. [more inside]
posted by heisenberg on Aug 4, 2014 - 51 comments

From the photo archives of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

For over a year, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has been digitizing old photos from its far-reaching library and putting them on a Tumblr called The Digs. [more inside]
posted by mcoo on Dec 2, 2013 - 9 comments

Looking good for a 600 year old antediluvian patriarch, Mr Crowe

The first trailer for Noah, the forthcoming Paramount Picture biblical epic, is online. With a budget of $130 million, and slated for release in March/April 2014, and with a cast of stars, this covers Chapter 6-9 of the Book of Genesis. Filming took place mostly in Iceland, with some scenes in New York State. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Nov 15, 2013 - 262 comments

[redacted]

"WNYC and The Record asked, separately, for documentation of NJ Transit’s hurricane preparedness plans. Both news organizations received the same reply: a three-and-a-half page document with the words “New Jersey Rail Operations Hurricane Plan” atop the first page. Everything else was blacked out." [more inside]
posted by 1970s Antihero on May 14, 2013 - 37 comments

Pantai Remis Landslide

On 21 October 1993, the working face separating the ocean from an open-pit tin mine collapsed dramatically, leaving a cove where the mine had once been.
posted by dunkadunc on Mar 6, 2013 - 31 comments

Ancient Fears: The Return of the Flood Saga

"The word reclaim came up more than once to describe the rising tide. It is a revealing word, more narrative than simply descriptive: it hints at some larger backstory, some plot twist in a longer saga about our claims and the water’s counterclaims to the earth.… This story was already ancient when it was adapted for the biblical text—which is to say, it records a very old fear. Like all old fears, it has the uncanny feel of a vivid memory. It may be a memory of an actual flood in an actual Sumerian city, Shurrupal, ca 2800 B.C.E. In fact, it may be even older than that."
posted by the mad poster! on Nov 13, 2012 - 21 comments

The Great Chicago Flood of 1992

"I have found something very interesting in the Chicago River on the east side of the Kinzie Bridge. I see swirling water that looks like a giant drain... I would say it looks like the source of the water could be the river itself, and I am hearing reports that fish are swimming in the basement of the [Merchandise] Mart just feet from the swirl! I do not see any emergency crews near this spinning swirl, but I think they may want to take a look. In fact, I think someone should wake up the Mayor!"
Twenty years ago today was the Great Chicago Flood. About 250,000,000 gallons of the Chicago River found its way--via a breach caused by construction near the all-but-forgotten tunnels of the Chicago Tunnel Company--into the basements of Chicago's Loop business district. It even sent fish up into the Pedway. [more inside]
posted by theoddball on Apr 13, 2012 - 41 comments

Wagga-wagga-wide-web

Yet another reason to live in Australia. Spider behaviour in the flooded SE Oz. [more inside]
posted by jcm on Mar 6, 2012 - 115 comments

U2's POP

Fifteen years and three weeks ago, four lads from Dublin wandered into a K-Mart in NYC and attracted a crowd as they played a song they've never played live since. They then took some questions from the audience about their intentions over the next year or so. The proceedings were carried live on music television stations around the world. (Part 1 2 3 4) The day was February 12, 1997; the song was Holy Joe; the men performing were U2. They were announcing the release of their new album, POP, released 15 years ago, on March 3, 1997. Loved by many critics, adored by many fans, met with an indifferent shrug by the general public, and repeatedly scorned by the band themselves, perhaps it's time to look back again at this controversial groundbreaking album and landmark tour. [more inside]
posted by hippybear on Mar 2, 2012 - 84 comments

Tsunami Drive-By

Yu Muroga was doing his job making deliveries when the 11 March 2011 earthquake hit in Japan. Unaware, like many people in the area, of how far inland the Tsunami would travel, he continued to drive and do his job. The HD camera mounted on his dashboard captured not only the earthquake, but also the moment he and several other drivers were suddenly engulfed in the Tsunami. He escaped from the vehicle seconds before it was crushed by other debris and sunk underwater.
posted by mannequito on Dec 20, 2011 - 49 comments

The village that re-emerged

AFP photographer Juan Mabromata recently visited the ruins of Villa Epecuén in Argentina, a small touristic village that started slowly re-surfacing after the rising waters of the nearby lake left it completely underwater nearly 26 years ago. [more inside]
posted by palbo on Jul 26, 2011 - 18 comments

The Scale of Nature: Modeling the Mississippi River

In 1943 the Army Corps of Engineers approved construction of a 200-acre scale model replicating the Mississippi River and its major tributaries — the Tennessee, Arkansas and Missouri Rivers — encompassing 41 percent of the land area of the United States and 15,000 miles of river.
posted by T.D. Strange on Jul 10, 2011 - 27 comments

New "Normal" temperatures released by NOAA, increased extreme weather events

When a TV meteorologist says "temperatures will be ten degrees above normal", the word "normal" has a specific meaning. Every 10 years NOAA re-calculates the "normal" temps for the USA based on the prior 30-year averages. The new normals have just been released, based on the 30 year period 1980-2010. Hotter is the new normal. With hotter weather comes more extreme weather. Extreme Weather and Climate Change, 3-part series from Scientific America .. and map of extreme weather events 1995-present.
posted by stbalbach on Jun 30, 2011 - 35 comments

Saving Louisiana by Temporarily Drowning Some of It

The opening of the Morganza spillway on May 14 by the U.S. Corps of Engineers is not only a tacit admission of the severity of the river control problems the spring 2011 flood of the Mississippi River is creating, but also one of the last remaining measures the Corps has for protecting the Old River Control Structure, which has prevented the Mississippi from naturally diverting its main channel through the shorter, steeper Atchafalaya River channel, since construction of the control structure in the late 1960's. If the Old River Control Structure fails (as it nearly did in the 1973 floods), or the river overwhelms other nearby levees north or south of the Morganza spillway/ORCS, the main channel of the Mississippi could suddenly shift westward by about 100 miles, bypassing New Orleans and the current lower delta, with severe long term effects for the U.S. economy. [more inside]
posted by paulsc on May 14, 2011 - 148 comments

'Til Death Tries To Do Us Part And Beyond

The Honeymoon From Hell. Stefan and Erika Svanstrom had planned a long trip that would start in Singapore in early December and end in China four months later. But things didn't go exactly as planned. They encountered floods, fires, tsunamis and earthquakes along the way.
posted by mannequito on May 6, 2011 - 14 comments

The other Cairo

It's not quite the Nile, but there is political strife there too. The Illinois river town of Cairo (KAY-row), IL, is surrounded by the Ohio and the Mississippi, and is in danger of being flooded. The Army Corps of Engineers wants to activate a flood mitigation plan by breaching some levees into spillways designed to mitigate such a flood. Unfortunately, those floodways are in Missouri, and they would rather not have a bunch of farmland flooded just to save some little town in Illinois. Judge Limbaugh (yes) gave the OK, but the battle isn't over yet.
posted by gjc on Apr 30, 2011 - 39 comments

Trees cocooned in spiders webs after flooding in Sindh, Pakistan

An unexpected side-effect of the flooding in parts of Pakistan has been that millions of spiders have climbed up into trees to escape the rising flood waters, cocooning them.
posted by livejamie on Mar 31, 2011 - 105 comments

Play Tesla the Weather Man

You are Nikola Tesla. Dodge obstacles and control the elements as you race to stop Thomas Edison. A game by ThoughtQuake Studios, made using open source software and part of IndieDB's top 100 games of 2010. via BlenderNation.
posted by circular on Mar 14, 2011 - 10 comments

I looked over my shoulder and saw her sitting on the floor of the aircraft and she was just devastated. It was heartbreaking.

Mark Kempton s a chopper pilot. On Monday January 10, 2011 while flood waters rose in Grantham, Queensland, Mark and his Emergency Management Queensland helicopter crew from Archerfield winched 28 people to safety over a period of 2 1/2 hours. [more inside]
posted by gomichild on Feb 16, 2011 - 13 comments

"We watched the Sandy River take down countless 50 foot tall trees, ripping them off its banks and swallowing them up."

Gorgeous HD video of the Sandy River flooding (SLVimeo).
posted by OverlappingElvis on Jan 26, 2011 - 30 comments

Ain't No Mountain High Enough

Recent heavy rain in Queensland has bought destructive flooding to many towns and cities. Yesterday the mountain city of Toowoomba was hit with heavy rain and experienced flash flooding. With (so far) eight confirmed dead and 70 missing, the disaster is set to worsen as more rainfall is predicted.
posted by the noob on Jan 10, 2011 - 264 comments

"Chattanooga is a young and thriving city and, with all the chances in her favor, her people are not to be discouraged by anything."

In Chattanooga, early in the first week of March 1867, rains came, and did not stop for four days. It was not until March 14 that the floodwaters began to subside, and the city was left covered in mud and debris and nearly destroyed. More than a century later, archaeologist and UTC Professor Dr. Jeff Brown became fascinated by strange architectural features he was finding on some of Chattanooga’s downtown buildings. [more inside]
posted by infinitewindow on Dec 1, 2010 - 22 comments

Gutter journalism

Victoria (Australia) had moderate flooding last week, which journalists were keen to report. Perhaps too keen. Full story here.
posted by wilful on Sep 13, 2010 - 27 comments

One Big Interdependant System

How are heatwaves in Russia and flooding in Pakistan related? Both result from a kink in the jet stream that has frozen in place. (Previous coverage of the disasters in Russia and Pakistan on the blue.)
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul on Aug 15, 2010 - 19 comments

Nashville...Waterline?

The Middle Tennessee region, including Nashville, is experiencing extensive flooding after weekend storms dropped a record-breaking 13-15 inches of rain over the weekend. [more inside]
posted by ghharr on May 4, 2010 - 92 comments

Like the Mines of Moria

The G-Cans (warning: mind-blowing photos inside) water collecting system in Kasukabe City, Japan is a massive underground silo network (more photos) in the greater Tokyo area designed to control flooding (note: this site is in Japanese with English tour link) from typhoons. [more inside]
posted by bwg on Feb 24, 2010 - 40 comments

"A giraffe, refusing to condescend to all the fuss, stood calmly in the rising water and later died of pneumonia."

Around the time of the flooding in Troyes a plant in the south-east of Paris which supplied compressed air to the owners of ‘pneumatique’ equipment – lifts, ventilation, industrial machinery – was submerged. Parisians were fond of compressed-air technology. It was how the postal service delivered mail from one office to another in small brass shuttles propelled along a network of tubes. It was also used to keep the clocks ticking on the streets of the city and, by subscription, in private apartments. When the plant went underwater during the night, pneumatic time stopped dead.
Pavements Like Jelly is an article by Jeremy Harding describing the 1910 Great Flood of Paris which started 100 years ago today. Photo exhibition with 1300 photographs focusing on Paris. Even more photos, taking in the entire Seine. Both sites are Flash heavy, for a smaller selection of non-Flash pictures go here and here. [1910 Paris Flood previously on MetaFilter]
posted by Kattullus on Jan 21, 2010 - 14 comments

"You sound like my mom..... My camera was safely cradled on the dashboard, with both hands on the steering wheel."

My drive to work in the rainstorm 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 [more inside]
posted by defenestration on Dec 4, 2009 - 40 comments

The Swirling Bathtub Drain in the River

"You'll have heard how the city once ended in fire, and around these parts, it threatens to end in ice every few years or so. But once, not too long ago, Chicago flirted with ending in water, an entirely preventable man-made inundation that few saw but everybody felt – a two-billion-dollar sucker punch tsunami that weighed in among the dozen most costly floods in American history." [more inside]
posted by AceRock on Oct 15, 2009 - 18 comments

Typhoon Ondoy / Tropical Storm Ketsana leaves Northern Philippines in a state of Calamity

410mm of rain fell over Northern Luzon, Philippines on September 25, 2009, leaving much of the country's capital and the surrounding regions submerged in water, reaching up to nine feet in some areas. As of latest coverage, over 100 were killed and 340,000 affected by the Typhoon. This amount has been the highest recorded amount of rainfall since the country's weather Bureau started recording rainfall levels in 1967, and exceeds the rainfall level of Hurrican Katrina (380mm). Two more tropical depressions could be under way in the midst of Ondoy's wake. As of now, there are still families stranded on the rooftops of their homes without food and potable water. Most relief aid is coming from volunteers. As for the country's president? She used the Php800M(USD16.8M) emergency fund for foreign trips. See the damage. International News Coverage: NYT Reuters CNN BBC [more inside]
posted by drea on Sep 27, 2009 - 23 comments

Blasphemy!

Curt Flood's suit of Baseball. In 1970, baseball's best center fielder, Curt Flood filed a lawsuit against Major League Baseball and its reserve clause.
posted by klangklangston on Sep 15, 2009 - 61 comments

Coal Ash Spill

Environmental disaster in Tennessee. On Monday, 5.4 million cubic yards (over 1 billion gallons; the Exxon Valdez oil spill was about 11 million gallons) of toxic coal ash sludge broke through an earthen retaining wall of a holding pond at TVA’s Kingston power plant, damaging 12 homes and covering over 400 acres up to six feet deep.
posted by homunculus on Dec 26, 2008 - 59 comments

The Great Sheffield Flood of 1864

Gunson looked up to see a breach appearing in the top of the dam. Feeling a sudden, violent, vibrating of the ground beneath his feet, he quickly scampered up the side of the embankment, luckily just in time, as a few seconds later there was a total collapse of a large section of the dam, unleashing a colossal mountain of water which thundered down the valley and on to the unsuspecting population below. For two hundred and fifty people who lived in Sheffield and the hamlets in the valley below the dam, this was to be their last night on Earth. Six hundred and fifty million gallons of water roared down the Loxley valley and into Sheffield, wreaking death and destruction on a horrific scale. [more inside]
posted by xchmp on Dec 9, 2008 - 6 comments

A marriage made in water

Last week, following torrential rains, Northern and Central Vietnam suffered their worst flooding in the past 25 years, killing more than 70 people and devastating buildings and crops. Still, life goes on in the inundated Hanoi neighborhoods, and water won't prevent people from walking/driving/boating around the city, getting engaged, marrying and fishing. These folks got their car back and the scenic Ninh Binh region looks like the Ha Long bay. By the way, Google understands vietnamese now.
posted by elgilito on Nov 7, 2008 - 22 comments

Anyone for the Global War on Flu?

The UK's national risk register is made public. It is kept updated by the secret squirrels in the Cabinet Office, and was previously kept under wraps. Pandemic flu and flooding beat out terrorism as the major risks facing the UK at the moment. Both are seen as less likely than a terrorist attack, but more devastating. The full pdf has a chart on page 7 showing the main risks on a grid.
posted by athenian on Aug 8, 2008 - 18 comments

Requiem for the Mighty Wurlitzer

A recently divulged casualty of the Iowa floods (previously covered on Mefi here) is the Mighty Wurlitzer organ at the Paramount Theater. The pictures are pretty awful, and the video is even worse. If you grew up in Cedar Rapids any time in the last 80 years, you'll have heard the Wurlitzer on at least one occasion. Cedar Rapidians are vowing to "Return and Rebuild". [more inside]
posted by thanotopsis on Jun 20, 2008 - 5 comments

Not Loving That Dirty Water

Hoping for the best for Mefites in eastern Iowa. I was CR born and raised, and just watching the feed on KCRG is ...disturbing. It looks like the height of the Cedar River is estimated at 25.4 feet, and it hasn't crested yet. They've lost a railroad bridge downtown so far, and the news feed keeps tracking the rise of the river by standing outside the studio and watching the water approaching. [more inside]
posted by thanotopsis on Jun 12, 2008 - 53 comments

High Water Everywhere

For decades, showman Tommy Bartlett ran a Wisconsin Dells "Thrill Show" featuring waterskiers performing all sorts of stunts on Lake Delton. His bumperstickers were on the station wagons of tens of thousands of families across the midwest. This summer, Lake Delton is no more.
posted by timsteil on Jun 9, 2008 - 38 comments

LOLHORRIBLEDEVELOPERS WHOHAPPENTOBEXTIANS WHOENDUPSCREWINGUPBOTH

What if the Devil tricked a well-meaning computer developer into making a horrendous animal racing game? (cringeworthy YouTube link) Now we know! Yes, Cougar Interactive has a product for you. Zoo Race! The biblical flood is over, and with hardly any people around, what's Noah, God, and the animals gonna do? Why, RACE of course! The game features compelling voice work, top flight graphics, and of course... animals straddling on rockets. And to top it all off, God is the announcer! It was the best 2007 had to offer, and it's still available... so, like their web site says.. Buy the FUN game that the big game companies would not ever make. (as found at Kotaku) [more inside]
posted by tittergrrl on Jan 17, 2008 - 58 comments

Out of the fire, into the flood

In Chapter 3 of his 1999 Pulitzer Prize winning book The Control of Nature, John Mcphee describes the catastrophe from debris flows following wild fires in the Los Angeles area in 1978. [more inside]
posted by strangeleftydoublethink on Oct 23, 2007 - 8 comments

Washed Away

Weatherfilter: Widespread flooding in the UK leaves hundreds of thousands of homes without water and power. Extraordinary scenes of the floods command many of the front pages of Monday's newspapers. The Environment Agency has warned water levels are expected to exceed those of the devastating floods of 1947.
posted by chuckdarwin on Jul 23, 2007 - 56 comments

"Thus the role played by Kaskaskia in the great drama of history closed in tragedy."

Kaskaskia: The western Illinois town stuck in eastern Missouri. First state capital, bustling economic center and a leading town in the state. That is, until the flood of 1881 cut a new river channel, destroying most of the town and leaving the remnants on the Missouri side of the Mississippi. Whether or not the disaster was due to a murdered lover's curse, the (remaining) residents petitioned that the state line be kept along the older riverbed. The town's population, once about 7000, now consists of a meager nine. [wiki]
posted by luftmensch on Mar 30, 2007 - 11 comments

Zut alors!

Photos of Paris during the 1910 flood. More. Yet more.
posted by monju_bosatsu on Jan 5, 2007 - 19 comments

Talking Rainpocalyse Rental Car Blues

And that's why you always buy the loss damage waiver when you rent a car. Man flies to Seattle, rents a PT Cruiser, drives to Olympic National Park to camp. Then one of the wettest months in regional history happens. The road washes out. While he and his companion are rescued, the car remains in the park, accruing rental charges. Rental company cuts him a deal. After 43 days and $871, the car is retrieved after emergency road repairs, and it's back in service at Sea-Tac.
posted by dw on Jan 5, 2007 - 31 comments

Ancient tsunami devastated Mediterranean

Ancient tsunami devastated Mediterranean possible root of flood myths and current major religious belief.
posted by Kickstart70 on Nov 30, 2006 - 34 comments

Are you covered?

Some call FEMA's administration of federal flood insurance and disaster relief illogical and illegal, although you won't find that in FEMA's recent summary of Katrina, which reveals that $15.3 billion dollars in federal flood insurance claims have been paid. That's quite a bit more than the National Flood Insurance Fund's budget, and you may recall that payouts didn't go smoothly. Still, having federal flood insurance, as opposed to relying on disaster relief, has proven its worth during the rebuilding process. Certainly Katrina was an extraordinary phenomenon, unlikely to be repeated any time soon. Perhaps that's why the annual disaster relief budget is smaller this year.
posted by owhydididoit on Aug 22, 2006 - 11 comments

how do i flood thee? let me count the ways...

Flash flood! A New Orleans Times Picayune flash animation of exactly how, and where, and when the city of New Orleans and surrounding areas flooded during Hurricane Katrina. Here's the accompanying article. Even as a local, I had no idea how weak the levee systems were. And apparently still are. Here's some more info from a local grassroots group fighting for better levee protection.
posted by ab3 on May 18, 2006 - 18 comments

Mascots helping Mascots

Mascots helping Mascots High schools across America have witnessed the devastation brought about by several recent natural disasters, such as Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. An outpouring of sympathy and concern, and a desire to help, have come forth from high schools wanting to assist those in need. To enable schools to help other schools, the National Federation of State High School Associations has initiated a fundraising program called the Mascot Adoption Program.
posted by ColdChef on Mar 13, 2006 - 3 comments

Dutch flood videos

Newsreels [Windows Media] from the Flood of 1953 in the Netherlands.
posted by Wolfdog on Sep 20, 2005 - 7 comments

New Orleans Flood in Your City

New Orleans Flood in Your City Map overlays of the New Orleans flood over various US cities.
posted by kirkaracha on Sep 8, 2005 - 43 comments

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