The Monsoon Season in New Mexico can be a great time of rejuvenation for the desert and mountainous landscape as much of the year’s precipitation falls during this time frame. However, there are often times adverse or hazardous byproducts of thunderstorms, not the least of which is flash flooding. Watch as we review the threats of flash flooding and dive into the specifics of urban flash flooding and the dangers of arroyos and flood channel diversions throughout Albuquerque. Lieutenant Chris Carlsen of the Albuquerque Fire Department joins us and shares his perspective as a firefighter, often called to perform swift water rescue deployments during flash flooding events.
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KRQE has done a story about the Turn Around Don’t Drown signs that have been going up in New Mexico recently. NMFMA Chair Dave Turk was interviewed for the piece.
New Turn Around Don’t Drown PSA available from the NWS on YouTube.
New Mexico Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (NMDHSEM) and the New Mexico Floodplain Managers Association (NMFMA) are proud to announce that recently acquired Turn Around Don’t Drown signs for Low Water Crossings across New Mexico have started to work their way into communities around the state. The first recipient was Curt Temple with Lincoln County who received 24 signs. Other locations where you should soon see TADD signs are
- City of Las Vegas
- Luna County
- Santa Fe County
- Village of Tijeras
- Otero County
- City of Farmington
- Pueblo de Cochiti
New Mexico State Floodplain Coordinator, Bill Borthwick with NMDHSEM, received funding from FEMA Region VI through the Community Assistance Program – State Support Services Element (CAP-SSSE) program to acquire 85 Turn Around Don’t Drown signs. Mr. Borthwick partnered with the NMFMA to distribute the signs across New Mexico. Communities who receive the signs are required to install the signs, photograph them, and GPS the locations of the signs. This information will be given back to the NMFMA to begin constructing a statewide low water crossing database. Mr. Borthwick hopes to work with FEMA Region VI and NMFMA in the future to continue to acquire and distribute signs across New Mexico.
According to the National Weather Service, 64 New Mexicans have lost their lives and 78 have been seriously injured in flash floods since 1959. Sixty-six percent of the fatalities occurred in a car.