Flood Risk Manager

The Nature of Floods

Red_river_FloodA flood can happen anytime and anywhere. The absence of historic flooding doesn’t mean a lack of future susceptibility to flooding. Whether minor or severe a flood disrupts the very fabric of your community. Roads are closed, people are displaced, businesses are closed, the economy suffers, lives are temporarily placed on hold, and lives can be lost. The effects of a flood remain within the community for years.

By effectively managing your flood risk, the disruption to the community is not only managed but greatly reduced. Accurate and rapidly available Information is vitally essential to managing your flood risk - information not only to plan for but respond to a flood. Effective planning begins the process of creatively managing your flood risk. Using the plan to quickly and deliberately respond during a flood further reduces risk. The Flood Risk Manager™ developed by Houston Engineering, Inc. (HEi) places accurate and timely information at your fingertips – through your desktop computer, tablet or mobile device. The FRM incorporates years of practical lessons learned, experience and knowledge assisting government and industry planning for and responding to floods.

Plan For Your Next Flood

The FRM includes customized information invaluable for effectively planning for the next flood. Information about your critical facilities subject to flooding, the locations and characteristics of temporary and permanent structural flood protection measures, probable road closure locations and command center facilities you provide in an ArcGIS compatible format are loaded into the FRM. Static flood inundation maps based on hydraulic modeling or the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) from your most recent Flood Insurance Study are tied to your specific GIS data. The interactive map allows you to visualize your flood risk resulting in rapid and effective planning. Areas protected by temporary and permanent structural flood protection measures are highlighted on the map, showing areas of higher risk. The need for roads closures affecting emergency responders become obvious. Geocoded tools zoom the user to a specific home, commercial building or intersection showing the extent of flooding. The user interacts with the map using the population assessment widget to identify the number of people inundated for specific area.

Dynamic, Real-Time Flood Inundation Maps from National Weather Service Forecasts

ffdt_iconlgThe FRM includes dynamic, real-time flood inundation mapping for deterministic flood forecasts issued by the National Weather Service (NWS). Results from the Sacramento Soil Moisture Accounting (SAC-SMA) hydrology model and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s HEC-RAS model exported from their Community Hydrologic Prediction System (CHPS) in XML format are used by the tool to provide dynamic, real-time flood inundation maps. Water depth grids and flood inundation polygons automatically created by the FRM can be download to your local desktop to aid in your emergency response effort. The travel time widget allows you to identify when the flood peak is expected to arrive at your location. Site specific high resolution topographic data can be loaded to improve inundation map accuracy. The flood inundation map is shared through Web Services thereby allowing use in other applications. The dynamic, real time flood inundation maps can be viewed on mobile devices and tables because of the use of mobile friendly technology.

Mitigating Flood Hazards

Future and imminent flood hazards are quickly and accurately assessed using the static or dynamic, real-time maps. Flood hazards are rapidly identified and effectively communicated through the use of the FRM. The ability to query the interactive map means you can quickly and easily identify not on the elevation but estimated flood water depth at the locations of buildings, utilities, roads, culverts and any structure or feature at risk of flooding. Loss avoidance strategies are readily visualize relative to their potential effectiveness.

More Information

More information about the FRM can be obtained by visiting the RRBDIN. Web demonstrations can be arranged by contacting Dr. Mark Deutschman either by phone (763-493-4522) or email (mdeutschman@houstoneng.com).