Rainfall Characteristics of the Prescott, Arizona, Storm of 23–24 September 1983

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  • 1 Division of planning Technical Services, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Denver, CO 80225
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Abstract

On 23–24 September 1983 the vicinity of Prescott, Arizona, experienced a 36 h period of recurrent heavy rains. Measurement obtained from a supplemental precipitation survey of the storm-affected area are used to derive maximum 6 h and total storm (36 h) precipitation patterns. Rainfall depth-area-duration (DAD) data computed from the patterns are compared with three standards of precipitation severity: 1) documented extreme rainstorms in the southwestern United States, 2) precipitation-frequency values and 3) probable maximum precipitation (PMP) estimates. The comparisons show the Prescott storm to be an exceptional event that produced rainfall exceeding 100-yr amounts as well as some categories of PMP.

Abstract

On 23–24 September 1983 the vicinity of Prescott, Arizona, experienced a 36 h period of recurrent heavy rains. Measurement obtained from a supplemental precipitation survey of the storm-affected area are used to derive maximum 6 h and total storm (36 h) precipitation patterns. Rainfall depth-area-duration (DAD) data computed from the patterns are compared with three standards of precipitation severity: 1) documented extreme rainstorms in the southwestern United States, 2) precipitation-frequency values and 3) probable maximum precipitation (PMP) estimates. The comparisons show the Prescott storm to be an exceptional event that produced rainfall exceeding 100-yr amounts as well as some categories of PMP.

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