The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a number of updates in recent days, warning Australians that a number of eastern and central states are at a high risk of experiencing flash flooding due to particularly heavy rainfall.
In an update sent by the BOM, the organisation stated that flash flooding “is a particularly dangerous form of flooding because it happens so quickly and can affect areas away from watercourses where you might not expect to see floods”.
In essence, one of the biggest risks here is that flash flooding “can turn roads into rivers, washing away cars and people”.
We're urging people across #NSW, #QLD, #SA, #Vic and the #ACT to prepare for severe weather & potential flooding in some areas over the next few days. Heavy rain & #storms are expected across parts with the potential for #flashflooding. Latest forecasts: https://t.co/C3ZfSaX6ma pic.twitter.com/4X8gHw67w5
— Bureau of Meteorology, Australia (@BOM_au) November 11, 2021
Weather warnings have been made, so it’s time that we issue the following demand, ever so calmly:
Please do not ever drive into a flood.
“It’s not even halfway up the tires,” you say, and I do not care. Turn that car around and go wait it out somewhere.
According to the United States National Weather Service, more than half of flood-related drownings in the country take place after a vehicle has been driven into floodwater.
“A mere [six] inches of fast-moving flood water can knock over an adult,” the agency warns.
“It takes just 30cm of rushing water to carry away most cars and just two feet of rushing water can carry away SUVs and trucks.”
The instruction to “Turn around, don’t drown” may feel cheesy, but floods can swell up quickly and even take place in unexpected spots where storm drains can’t handle a sudden deluge. It’s best not to take your chances if the road ahead of you has any standing water.
If you would like an even nicer reminder of this concept, here is a PSA in the form of a music video! It’s so earnest it’s impossible to hate.
This article has been updated to reflect recent flash flood warnings in Australia