Monitoring River Levels

Name: _________________________________       Date: _____________

Has it been raining lately? Heavy rains can trigger floods. In this activity, you'll look at river data to find out if any parts of the country are at risk of flooding this week. You'll also check out the current state of the rivers or streams where you live.

  1. Go to Waterwatch from USGS. Look at the color key below the map. What do the different colors of the dots represent?
  2. Which states or regions are at risk of floods today?
  3. What might cause a dot to suddenly change color?
  4. Click your state on the national map. On your state map, click the colored dot closest to where you live. What is the name of the river or stream?
  5. What is its flood risk level today?
  6. Look at the Summary data. Compare the river's stage today to its flood stage. How close is it to flood stage now?
  7. Click the Peak tab in its data table. How high was the river at its historical peak?
  8. What factors might affect the flood risk along the rivers in your area?