Boulder Drenched by 'Proverbial 100-Year Flood'

As 73-year rainfall record is absolutely smashed

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 13, 2013 6:05 AM CDT | Updated Sep 13, 2013 7:57 AM CDT

(Newser) – A third person has died as floods continue to ravage northern Colorado, driving some 4,000 people out of Boulder late yesterday. Rainfall in the city has obliterated a 73-year record, with 12.3 inches falling since Sept. 1—compared to 5.5 in September 1940. Floodwater is pouring from neighboring Boulder Canyon, Reuters reports. "There's so much water coming out of the canyon, it has to go somewhere, and unfortunately it's coming into the city," says an official. The Denver Post shares these jarring numbers: Boulder Creek typically flows at between 100 and 300 cubic feet per second; it hit 4,500 cfs this week.

Further, a rep for the US Geological Survey says there was just a 1% chance Boulder would see a storm like this in a year, "meaning the storm is a proverbial 100-year flood," writes the Post. Nearby Longmont has seen 7,000 evacuated, while the National Guard brought supplies to the town of Lyons, which has been cut off from neighboring areas. Landlines and cellphones aren't working in Estes Park, where the only functioning way to communicate with the outside world is via ham radio. With rain likely to continue today, President Obama declared a state of emergency for the state last night, CNN reports.

This image provided by Jason Stillman, shows flooding in Lyons Colo., Thursday Sept. 12, 2013.   (AP Photo/Jason Stillman)
Rescue workers and vehicles stand parked waiting for roads to become passable following overnight flash flooding in Boulder, Colo., Thursday, Sept 12, 2013.   (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)
David Platco looks over a flooded and damage storage facility in North Boulder, Colo., on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013.   (AP Photo/The Daily Camera, Paul Aiken)
A police officer allows a special dive rescue team to pass on a closed road following overnight flash flooding in downtown Boulder, Colo., Thursday, Sept 12, 2013.   (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)
A flood water shoots out of a sewer on Canon Avenue on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013, in Manitou Springs, Colo.   (AP Photo/The Colorado Springs Gazette, Michael Ciaglo)
In this still frame made from ABC 7NEWS video on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013, people walk through floodwaters from a creek in Boulder, Colo.   (AP Photo/ABC 7NEWS)
A man photographs the flooding in the underpass at Boulder Creek and Broadway Street in Boulder, Colo. on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013.   (AP Photo/The Daily Camera, Cliff Grassmick NO SALES)
A couple plays in flood water at Utah Park in Aurora, Colo., on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013.   (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)
Brian Flynn, of Oregon, clears a drain in front of his sister's home in Boulder, Colo., on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013.   (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)
A duck swims near bleachers at Utah Park on Thursday, Sept. 12, 2013, in Aurora, Colo.   (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)
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