We are in the monsoon season where pop up thunderstorms can quickly and unexpectedly bring flash floods no matter where you live warns Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna. Though part of natures beauty, the can be very dangerous.
Watch for the following signs warns Chief DiGiovanna: Unusually hard rain over several hours, steady substantial rain over several days, A monsoon or other tropical system affecting your area, A special weather report or warning, water rising rapidly in streams and rivers.
In mountain and desert areas flash floods can strike with little or no advance warning. Distant rain may be channeled into gullies and ravines, turning a quiet stream into a rampaging torrent in minutes. Never camp on low ground next to streams since a flash flood can catch you while you’re asleep.
Do not drive through flooded areas! Even if it looks shallow enough to cross. The large majority of deaths due to flash flooding occur with people driving through flooded areas. Roads concealed by water may not be intact.
Do not allow children to play around streams, drainage ditches or viaducts, storm drains, or other flooded areas! Be especially cautious at night. It’s harder to recognize water danger then.  Don’t try to outrace a flood on foot. If you see or hear it coming, move to higher ground immediately.
Stay tuned! The National Weather Service will issue a Flash Flood Watch when heavy rains may result in flash flooding in a specific area. In this case you should be alert and prepare for the possibility of a flood emergency, which will require immediate action. A Flash Flood Warning will be issued when flash flooding is occurring or is imminent in a specified area. If your locale is placed under a warning, you should move to safe ground immediately.
Remember, these storms also bring lightning. Use extra caution!
For additional severe weather safety information visit: http://www.nws.noaa.gov/safety.php
Fire Chief Sam DiGiovanna