A study of annual maximum precipitation frequency in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, was conducted to characterize the frequency of precipitation at sites having at least 10 years of precipitation record. Precipitation-frequency studies provide information about the occurrence of precipitation amounts for given durations (for example, 1 hour or 24 hours) that can be expected to occur within a specified recurrence interval (expressed in years). In this study, annual maximum precipitation totals were determined for durations of 15 and 30 minutes; 1, 2, 3, 6, 12, and 24 hours; and for recurrence intervals of 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, and 500 years.
Precipitation data collected by the U.S. Geological Survey network of raingages in the city of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County were analyzed for this study. In September 2004, more than 70 precipitation sites were in operation; 27 of these sites had at least 10 years of record, which is the minimum record typically required in frequency studies. Missing record at one site, however, resulted in its removal from the dataset. Two datasets--the Charlotte Raingage Network (CRN) initial and CRN modified datasets--were developed from the U.S. Geological Survey data, which represented relatively short periods of record (10 and 11 years). The CRN initial dataset included very high precipitation totals from two storms that caused severe flooding in areas of the city and county in August 1995 and July 1997, which could significantly influence the statistical results. The CRN modified dataset excluded the highest precipitation totals from these two storms but included the second highest totals.
Additional Publication Details
USGS Numbered Series
Frequency of annual maximum precipitation in the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, through 2004