Nov 24, 2015

The South Carolina Floods Were a 1-in-9,000 Year Event

Columbia, SC
Charleston, SC
Jim Gandy
Credit: Jim Gandy
Credit: Jim Gandy

The October 2015 flood has frequently been described as a 1,000-year flood...[The] two- and three-day rainfall could be characterized as a 1-in-a-800 year event in Charleston. However, it was a greater than 1-in-a-1,000 year event for Columbia using the data from the National Weather Service at the Metropolitan Airport. The three-day rainfall totals were in fact so extreme that they could be classified as a 1-in-9,000 year event. There were greater amounts of rainfall in the Charleston and Columbia areas, but those records did not extend over a long enough time period to do the analysis.