Science of The Waiting Game - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Science of The Waiting Game

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As people keep their eyes on the snow, many are wondering when they need to be prepared for a flood.  Many neighbors have been through the floods before, and know what to watch for, like the deterministic number.

Meteorologist Hutch Johnson explains, "We have snow on the ground but we don't know how fast it's going to melt, and if it's all coming down the river channel at once. The forecasts that you hear right now are not really forecasts, they are probalistic forecasts, the river will probably be between this value and that value. Once we start seeing the river gages rise, is when you'll start hearing more precise numbers of how high that number might be."

That's what the city looks for.  "The biggest thing for the city leaders is we're going to be looking at probalistic to a deterministic flow, and that's when the river channel opens up and you can actually go and get physical measurements from the river." Says City Engineer Mark Miller.

People say they won't worry until they start to see the melt. "Oh when that river starts to rise, and we get a few days from the crest, from the anticipated crest." says Gary Haynie.


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