Extreme flooding can cause a variety of issues, from overflowing rivers to severe property damage and destruction.
A recent viral video showed an entire house collapsing into the raging Mendenhall River in Alaska. This followed massive flooding in the area. The drone footage features the home (along with other apartment buildings and houses) resting on receding land along the water. Eventually, the ground beneath the huge house can no longer support the home, causing it to crash into the water, which then carries it downstream.
As this occurred, residents stood around in horror, watching it all go down. You can watch the devastating footage at the end of this article.
Why Causes Land Loss?
Land loss often occurs over time as a result of severe weather (such as flooding) and erosion. Other common reasons include inadequate sediment supply and subsidence. As a result, any properties on the lost land can be damaged or destroyed. This was the exact case in the video linked below.
Can Flooding Cause Erosion?
Yes, extreme flooding — especially of a river or other large body of water — can cause the impacted land to erode. This is likely what happened in the Mendenhall River. As the land beneath the house began to erode and recede, the house could no longer stay grounded and crumbled into the raging water.
When this happens, there’s relatively nothing anyone can do to save the properties on the eroding land. Oftentimes, residents will simply have to evacuate their homes — a devastating feat. However, there is — thankfully — usually ample warning before any extreme destruction occurs.
What Causes Rivers to Rise?
Rivers typically rise due to rain or snowmelt. This can happen quickly or over time, depending on the severity of the precipitation. For example, flash floods are known to overwhelm river basins — often within hours. Additionally, suppose it’s been heavily raining for days in a row. In that case, there’s a higher likelihood the river will become overwhelmed and rise, which can damage the land and structures around it.
Watch the Devastating Footage
The photo featured at the top of this post is © Danaan/Shutterstock.com
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