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Arizona Dam Causes Flooding

Aug 28, 2008
While it seems that many parts of the country are still suffering from droughts, although some not quite so severe as last year, the southeastern United States is still behind in normal amounts of rainfall in many places. This however has not been the case for some other parts of the country like the Midwest earlier this spring. Although rains have subsided there over the course of the summer, the rain has been wreaking havoc in one of the driest states in the country this week, Arizona.

Several days of heavy rain that accumulated up to eight inches, caused a dam to break in Supai Canyon on a recent Sunday afternoon. This area of the Grand Canyon is very popular for hikers and campers alike and usually has some there during be busiest of the tourist season. Sunday was no exception. A campground near some falls was flooding and about one hundred and seventy people had to be evacuated from here.

Rescues had to be made for at least fifteen more campers and hikers after the canyon flooded. They were forced to spend the night in the canyon without their tents and other gear until help arrived to air lift them to safety.

The smallest Native American tribe in the country, The Supai tribe, also had to be evacuated from their settlement to nearby shelters. About four hundred members were moved because of threat to their settlement.

The dam that broke was a small earthen one and we can see what kind of upheaval this kind of little tragedy can cause. Just imagine what the results would be if one of the larger dams in our country gave way. There is no telling how many inhabited areas that would be affected. There is also no telling how many millions or even billions of dollars worth of property damage would accumulate when all was said and done. There is also no way to calculate in advance how many lives would be lost.

The rescuers will still be searching Monday looking for other people that are still unaccounted for at the site of the Arizona dam break. So far no human casualties have been reported, but the day is not over yet and not everyone has been found. This is just a minor example of how quickly something like this can happen with no warning what so ever. Dam inspections are taking place all over the United States and many of them are found lacking when it comes to there overall safety. We can only hope that repairs are made before a major break happens.
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Rachel Yoshida is a writer of many topics, visit some of her sites, like
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