Montgomery CountyExecutive Marc Elrich marked “Maryland Flood Awareness Month” today by announcing it has completed installation of 35 flood sensors as part of the County’s early flood warning system. The sensors in flood-prone areas will enhance County’s efforts regarding emergency responses to flooding and mitigate flood damage.
Montgomery County announced the completed installation of the flood sensors in ceremonies at Burnt Mills Dam in Silver Spring. Among those attending were U.S Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate, Sensors and Platforms Technology Center Director Jeff Booth; County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security (OEMHS) Emergency Management Director Luke Hodgson; County Department of Transportation Chief of Highway Services Richard Dorsey and County Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Acting Director and County Climate Change Officer Adriana Hochberg.
DHS provided Montgomery County with 35 high-tech flood sensors free of charge as part of a national pilot program to detect rising water levels and provide early warnings about high water or flooding.
“Every second counts when dealing with dangerous flooding conditions,” said County Executive Elrich. “These sensors will alert the County’s emergency response team when the water levels rise above the set thresholds. Our teams can then respond quickly to flood events and alert the public. One of our most effective methods for reaching community members during emergencies is through Alert Montgomery. I encourage everyone to sign up to receive emergency alerts from Montgomery County directly to your mobile devices. Through this service, Montgomery County officials can send accessible emergency notifications, updates, warnings, and instructions right to you.”
The flood sensors are located at 35 sites identified by DEP and OEMHS, including high or significant-hazard dams, low-lying roads and flood-prone areas. The real-time sensors complement the County’s existing monitoring that includes DEP’s Dam Safety Operations and OEMHS’s tracking of water levels at streams and rivers across the County through the U.S. Geological Survey gauges.
The flood sensors are part of a strategic plan to address flooding in the County. DEP is leading the development of the Comprehensive Flood Management Plan consisting of several phases of work, spanning the next few years, that includes assessing vulnerable areas, detailed flood studies, adaptation designs and implementation of mitigation projects.
For more information on the flood sensors visit the County’s Flood website at https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/flooding/.