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So you might be surprised that a group of 117 scientists who work for the USGS aren't talking about earthquakes today, and instead are warning us of something that could be even more destructive. The USGS unveiled Friday a new study of what they call an "Arkstorm Scenario." It's a mega-storm that would measure rain in feet instead of inches.
This document summarizes the next major public project for MHDP, a winter storm scenario called ARkStorm (for Atmospheric River 1,000). Experts have designed a large, scientifically realistic meteorological event followed by an examination of the secondary hazards (for example, landslides and flooding), physical damages to the built environment, and social and economic consequences. The hypothetical storm depicted here would strike the U.S. West Coast and be similar to the intense California winter storms of 1861 and 1862 that left the central valley of California impassible. The storm is estimated to produce precipitation that in many places exceeds levels only experienced on average once every 500 to 1,000 years.