Floods in Town

Flooding in Alaska-When does flooding occur and what are the hazards. Give examples (photo links etc. are fine).

  • Flooding in my village of Scammon Bay happens in the late spring after the river starts melting up.   This is typically around May when the rivers are starting to breakup and chunks of ice are carried downstream towards the ocean.   The river sometimes gets clogged with ice chunks and until they thaw enough to move downstream, the water is held up behind it.   When the clog is over the contained water rushes down and floods the land.   In this event, people with houses near the water are allowed to go further up to where the school is and stay up there for shelter until the threat passes.   It is interesting to watch the effects of the flood on the boats that are in the water at the time or that begin floating because of the flooding waters.   Many people pull their boats further away from the river, but those who don’t may find their boat floating away and have to retrieve it when the water recedes.   Another hazard in our village is that the runway is right on the water so when floods occur, airplanes cannot come in or go out which is dangerous, stops food and mail from coming and going, and prohibits travel.   Thankfully there are still other emergency options should the need arise, but the costs would be high for those services.
  • I found a couple interesting links to villages right in our Yukon-Kuskokwim area that read similarly to my experiences and perhaps detail the flooding more.   These articles would be nice for students to relate our community to others in the area.   Perhaps they have family or friends in the villages mentioned.   This would make an interesting compare and contrast assignment or for relating stories by writing newspaper articles about flooding that has happened in Scammon Bay.


Ice Break-Up Causes Yukon River Floodin May 2009

Western Alaska: Highest Kuskokwim River flooding ‘in memory’ May 2011

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