Flood of April 1979

The following report was compiled by the National Weather Service Office in Birmingham. Considering the recent flood that impacted Nashville, you may be wondering about severe river floods in our area. The Flood of April 1979 was the last severe and widespread river flood.

National Weather Service, Birmingham Office – A wet winter and early spring season set the stage for major flooding in April of 1979. Heavy rains brought flooding to Central Alabama during the first week of April, but this was only a prelude to the widespread and record or near record flooding that occurred later in the month.

A storm system approaching Alabama on the 11th brought extreme rainfall to the area during the next two days. By the morning of the 13th, four to eight inches of rain were common in North Alabama, with totals as high as 10 to 15 inches in the western counties. Heavy rain continued through the morning of the 13th, shifting south and east, with 4 to 5 inches falling over Lake Martin in approximately two hours before noon. By mid afternoon, most of the rain had moved east of the area.

Record or near record crests occurred along much of the Tombigbee, Black Warrior and Sucarnoochee Rivers with severe residential and commercial flooding in areas such as Tuscaloosa, Demopolis, Gainesville and Livingston. Thousands of acres of farm lands, woodlands, and pasture lands were flooded, as well as numerous camps and cabins along these rivers.

Widespread signficiant, but less severe, flooding occurred on many area rivers, including the Alabama, Coosa, Tallapoosa and Cahaba Rivers, with some residential flooding occurring in the vicinities of Montgomery, Gadsden and the Tallapoosa Water Plant.

(Source: NWS Birmingham)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: