Friday, May 21, 2010

One Flood Study Down (again); Three to Go

Yesterday, after I thoughtI had done everything needed to get my Little Osage Creek flood map changes out the door and FedEx-ing back to FEMA, as I was trying to resolve why a 50 foot long section of the creek was not behaving (i.e. I couldn't get the spread of the flood waters to make sense between the model and the map for three cross-sections), I saw an elevation error in the model. At least I thought that's what it was. All my paper copies of the map had markings in that area, and I couldn't read them to resolve whether I had an elevation error or not. What to do? I was shooting to get this out the door the next day, now today. It was 5 PM.

I can't do AutoCAD, or any other type of computer aided design/drafting program, but IT has installed a viewer for these drawings on my computer. So I went searching for the original survey drawings on our network, found them (or I guess it), and opened it using the viewer. There I was able to pan, enlarge, and focus in on the problem area. There was a bust. I showed the ground elevations almost 3 feet higher than they really were at the problem cross-section. For the first 200 feet south of the ditch, the flood waters would certainly spread farther up the side street than I was showing.

So I changed the elevations in the cross-section, re-ran the basic flood model, and had good results. I then pulled up the encroachment model and ran it, and had good results. Actually, I was able to tweak the encroachment limits to something much more reasonable and not exceed allowable encroachment elevation rises. I printed the documents I needed--and the program crashed. That was 6:30 PM last night. I finished tweaking the map and put it on the CAD tech's desk for today's work.

But the pages did print. So this morning I opened the program and found that I had saved often enough that I only had to re-enter a handful of numbers. Of course I had to re-print some pages so that the dates on the printout would match the date on the model, but I had that done. One table changed in the flood insurance study book, a request to I.T. to burn three copies of the model onto CDs, and some collating, and the report was on the admin assistant's desk. So I was at the mercy of I.T. and Admin, as of 9:30 AM this morning.

But all three support people came through. I had the corrected work map and flood map on my desk by 10:00 AM, the CDs by 10:45, and the bound volumes by 11:30. I'll put one in FedEx this afternoon, and deliver one to the City about 1:30 PM, and consider this project done. At least until FEMA comes back with other comments.

I'd like to coast a bit, but now I have to jump on the "I" Street flood study revision, then the McKisic Creek flood study, then the Crystal Bridges flood study revision. Except for that Federal law back in 1968 I might not have a job now.

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