After the devastating floods caused by Hurricane Mitch in 1998, maps of the areas and depths of the 50-year-flood inundation at 15 municipalities in Honduras were prepared as a tool for agencies involved in reconstruction and planning. This report, which is one in a series of 15, presents maps of areas in the municipality of Tegucigalpa that would be inundated by a 50-year flood of Rio Choluteca, Rio Grande, Rio Guacerique, and Rio Chiquito. Geographic Information System (GIS) coverages of the flood inundation are available on a computer in the municipality of Tegucigalpa as part of the Municipal GIS project and on the Internet at the Flood Hazard Mapping Web page (http://mitchnts1.cr.usgs.gov/projects/floodhazard.html). These coverages allow users to view the flood inundation in much more detail than is possible using the maps in this report.
Water-surface elevations for an estimated 50-year-flood on Rio Choluteca, Rio Grande, Rio Guacerique, and Rio Chiquito at Tegucigalpa were determined using HEC-RAS, a one-dimensional, steady-flow, step-backwater computer program. The channel and floodplain cross sections used in HEC-RAS were developed from an airborne light-detection-and-ranging (LIDAR) topographic survey of the area and ground surveys at bridges. There are no nearby long-term stream-gaging stations; therefore, the 50-year-flood discharges were estimated using a regression equation that relates the 50-year-flood discharge to drainage area and mean annual precipitation. The estimated 50-year-flood discharge is 922 cubic meters per second at Rio Choluteca at downstream end of the study area boundary, 663 cubic meters per second at the mouth of the Rio Grande, 475 cubic meters per second at the mouth of the Rio Guacerique, and 254 cubic meters per second at the mouth of the Rio Chiquito.