Flood-Inundation Maps for the North River in Colrain, Charlemont, and Shelburne, Massachusetts, From the Confluence of the East and West Branch North Rivers to the Deerfield River

Scientific Investigations Report 2015-5108
Prepared in cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency
By: , and 

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Abstract

A series of 10 digital flood-inundation maps were developed for a 3.3-mile reach of the North River in Colrain, Charlemont, and Shelburne, Massachusetts, by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The coverage of the maps extends from the confluence of the East and West Branch North Rivers to the Deerfield River. Peak-flow estimates at the 50-, 20-, 10-, 4-, 2-, 1-, 0.5-, and 0.2-percent annual exceedance probabilities were computed for the reach from updated flood-frequency analyses. These peak flows were routed through a one-dimensional step-backwater hydraulic model to obtain the corresponding peak water-surface elevations and to place the tropical storm Irene flood of August 28, 2011, into historical context. The hydraulic model was calibrated by using the current [2015] stage-discharge relation at the U.S. Geological Survey streamgage North River at Shattuckville, MA (station number 01169000), and from documented high-water marks from the tropical storm Irene flood, which had a peak flow with approximately a 0.2-percent annual exceedance probability.

A hydraulic model was used to compute water-surface profiles for 10 flood stages referenced to the streamgage and ranging from 6.6 feet (ft; 464.5 ft North American Vertical Datum of 1988 [which is approximately bankfull]) to 18.3 ft (476.2 ft North American Vertical Datum of 1988 [which is the stage of the 0.2-percent annual exceedance probability peak flow and exceeds the maximum recorded water level at the streamgage and the National Weather Service major flood stage of 13.0 ft]. The mapped stages of 6.6 to 18.3 ft were selected to match the stages of flows for bankfull; the 50-, 20-, 10-, 4-, 2-, 1-, 0.5-, and 0.2-percent annual exceedance probabilities; and an incremental stage of 17.0 ft. The simulated water-surface profiles were combined with a geographic information system digital elevation model derived from light detection and ranging (lidar) data with a 0.5-ft vertical accuracy to create a set of flood-inundation maps.

The availability of the flood-inundation maps, combined with information regarding near-real-time stage from the U.S. Geological Survey North River at Shattuckville, MA streamgage can provide emergency management personnel and residents with information that is critical for flood response activities, such as evacuations and road closures, and postflood recovery efforts. The flood-inundation maps are nonregulatory, but provide Federal, State, and local agencies and the public with estimates of the potential extent of flooding during selected peak-flow events. Introduction

Suggested Citation

Bent, G.C., Lombard, P.J., and Dudley, R.W., 2015, Flood-inundation maps for the North River in Colrain, Charlemont, and Shelburne, Massachusetts, from the confluence of the East and West Branch North Rivers to the Deerfield River: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2015–5108, 16 p., appendixes, http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/sir20155108.

ISSN: 2328-0328 (online)

Study Area

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Abstract
  • Introduction
  • Purpose and Scope
  • Study Area Description
  • Creation of Flood-Inundation Map Library
  • Computation of Water-Surface Profiles
  • Hydrology
  • Topographic and Bathymetric Data
  • Hydraulic Model
  • Development of Water-Surface Profiles
  • Flood-Inundation Maps
  • Flood-Inundation Map Delivery
  • Disclaimer for Flood-Inundation Maps
  • Uncertainties and Limitations Regarding Use of Flood-Inundation
  • Summary
  • References Cited
  • Appendix 1. Simulated Water-Surface Elevations at Modeled Cross Sections Along the North River, Colrain, Charlemont, and Shelburne, Massachusetts
  • Appendix 2. Shapefiles of Flood Inundation Areas for the 1- and 0.2-Percent Annual Exceedance Probability Flows Along the North River Study Reach in Colrain, Charlemont, and Shelburne, Massachusetts

Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title Flood-Inundation Maps for the North River in Colrain, Charlemont, and Shelburne, Massachusetts, From the Confluence of the East and West Branch North Rivers to the Deerfield River
Series title Scientific Investigations Report
Series number 2015-5108
DOI 10.3133/sir20155108
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location Reston, VA
Contributing office(s) Massachusetts Water Science Center
Description Report: v, 15 p.; Appendixes: 1-2; Application site; Metadata; Spacial data
Country United States
State Massachusetts
City Colrain, Charlemont, Shelburne, Shattuckville
Other Geospatial North River, Deerfield River
Online Only (Y/N) Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N) Y