The team of scientists assigned with evaluating the flood risk resulting from the Waldo Canyon fire estimates that flood risk may have increased by 350 percent. That number comes from the Burned Area Emergency Response Team.
Charred hillsides are vulnerable to erosion and flooding during downpours because they have less vegetation to soak up rain, and burned soils can repel water.
Before the fire was even fully contained, KKTV 11 News Chief Meteorologist Brian Bledsoe said flooding concerns are now foremost in his mind.
“We’re approaching the height of thunderstorm season here in Colorado,” he said, “It’s basically the equivalent of pouring a big ‘ol glass of water right on your tabletop. It just goes everywhere.”
Homeowners are encouraged to protect themselves by purchasing flood insurance, which is not part of regular homeowner’s policies. Information on flood insurance is available through your insurance agent or www.FloodSmart.gov.