Eagle County Flood Plan
Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural hazards. Some floods develop slowly but flash floods can happen in just minutes. Flood prone areas have been identified throughout Eagle County. Due to the mountainous terrain, almost all areas of the county are susceptible to flash flooding. A flash flood is typically caused by sudden, excessive rainfall that sends a river, stream or other body of water rapidly out of its banks. Often this occurs in a short amount of time, only several hours or even less. They can also be caused by ice jams on rivers in conjunction with a winter or spring thaw, or occasionally even a dam break. The constant influx of water finally causes a treacherous overflow which can be powerful enough to sweep vehicles away, roll boulders into roadways, uproot trees, level buildings, and drag bridges off their piers. Most alarming is the speed at which the water rises.
In Eagle County, and the western United States generally, the soil is typically dry, sandy and unable to absorb large amounts of water. It's important to know your neighborhood flood history. Eagle County's Engineering Department provides floodplain mapping and belongs to the Community Rating System (CRS) which is part of the National Flood Insurance Program.