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Agua Caliente Wash Alerts

This is the MyAlerts message page for Agua Caliente Wash. It contains information about the messages that will be sent to folks who have signed up for MyAlerts messages within the Agua Caliente Wash floodplain as well as relevant flood safety information.

For up-to-date emergency information, check the Twitter feeds for the
 Pima County Office of Emergency Management and the Pima County Sheriff.


NOTE: Weather is unpredictable, so floods are too. We will occasionally be wrong, but that does not mean that the safety messages should be ignored.  It is your responsibility to use sound judgment in and around flood waters.  Please read the Disclaimer tab below for a more detailed explanation.

Flood Alert Messages

Messages and What They Mean

The following messages are examples of what you can expect to receive when the District observes flow at the stream gage for this area. Actual messages may vary slightly depending on conditions. For each example message we provide the stream gage discharge at which the message is expected to be sent and an explanation of the purpose of the message and actions you should take when you receive that message.

Current stream flow data can be obtained on the ALERT page for Gage 2253 (Google Chrome recommended, may not work with Internet Explorer).
 Stream Flow  Message  Explanation
 5,000
(cubic feet
per second)
Not Applicable. A Flood Alert is not anticipated at this level. At-grade crossings may be impassible. Plan to travel on alternate routes. Pay attention for future alerts and be prepared to initiate your emergency response plan.
7,000 cfs Flooding on Agua Caliente Wash is expected out of banks. Flooded homes possible. Expect hazardous road conditions. Be prepared to activate your emergency response plan. If you are experiencing flooding and feel like you are in danger call 911. This message is from the Pima County Office of Emergency Management. Homes near the wash may be flooded. Flood water may breakout around the east end of the spur dike on the east bank above Tanque Verde Road and cross Tanque Verde Road east of the bridge. Sundance Drive and Melpomene Way are potential trouble areas. Flooding may affect homes near Melpomene and Conestoga.
13,000 cfs Flooding on Agua Caliente Wash is expected out of banks. Flooded homes expected, especially south of Ft. Lowell. Expect hazardous road conditions. Be prepared to activate your emergency response plan. If you are experiencing flooding and feel like you are in danger call 911. This message is from the Pima County Office of Emergency Management. Flood waters expected to reach full extent of the inundation area shown on the map. Tanque Verde Road at the bridge may be impassable. Other roads likely impassable. Exercise extreme caution if you evacuate. Road conditions will be hazardous.

Flood Safety

Flood waters on Agua Caliente Wash can arrive quickly, with little warning. So it is extremely important that you plan ahead and take appropriate safety precautions. General flood safety information and ideas can be found on our Be Flood Safe web page.

Specific Flood Safety Information For Agua Caliente Wash


Inundation of homes adjacent to the main watercourse may start at 5,000 cubic feet per second (cfs), recorded at Tanque Verde Road Gage (ALERT page for Gage 2203 ).  Homes located on both sides of the wash north of the spur dike and south of Ft. Lowell Road may flood as flows approach 7,000 cfs.  Flows greater than 7,000 cfs are likely to go around the spur dike.  Homes immediately upstream of Fort Lowell Road are expected to flood as flows reach 13,000 cfs, with flooding increasing in severity and likelihood further upstream and downstream as flows exceed 13,000 cfs.

This area contains numerous wash crossings that may become impassable, namely Milagrosa Lane, Soldier Trail, Limberlost Road, and Fort Lowell Road.  Paved crossings are subject to flood damage and may be severely damaged.  Snyder Road between Harrison Rd. and Soldier Trail is particularly problematic. Fort Lowell Road is an at-grade crossing and should be avoided when water is flowing across it.

Agua Caliente Wash overbanks on the left bank near Limberlost and Soldier Trail.  Flooding is exacerbated by tributary flows. 

Agua Caliente Wash is head-cutting up towards Soldier Trail.  Damage to roadway likely as head-cutting progresses up stream. Do not drive on this crossing when water is flowing across the roadway. 

The entire Agua Caliente base flood (around 13,000 cfs) will not fit through the Tanque Verde Road Bridge on major floods.  Some flow will go over Tanque Verde Road east of the bridge.  For the base flood or less, flow depths over the roadway are expected to be less than one foot deep.  If you are traveling down Tanque Verde Road and it appears to have shallow flow going over the roadway to the east of the bridge, do not proceed. 

Disclaimer

NOTE: Weather is unpredictable, so floods are too. The alerts provided err on the side of caution. It is possible that you may receive a warning and the events described do not occur. This is, in part, because floods in Pima County can develop so quickly that we have to anticipate possible events early in order to give the public reasonable time to react to the potential threat. In addition, there are many unpredictable factors that affect the extent of flooding. Flood damage may be lower or higher than what we expect. The District strives to provide the best possible information based upon the best available data and is not liable for errors. No message can guarantee your safety.

We will occasionally be wrong, but that does not mean that the safety messages should be ignored.  It is your responsibility to use sound judgment in and around flood waters.

Due to the fast-changing pace of flood conditions, the flood discharge at which flood alerts are sent may vary from those indicated in the individual watercourse pages based on real-time evaluation by District staff. In addition, flood alerts may be sent to a larger inundation area than the current discharge predicts in order to provide additional warning time to residents.