The Peace River has never been flowing this heavily within most people’s memories.
The record flow—in some cases two to four times the previous records—bears out predictions by forecasters that Ian would cause severe flooding.
River flow typically increases the farther downstream you travel, but the flow figures are truly amazing.
Saturday the flow at Arcadia was 50,500 cubic feet per second. The previous record occurred in 1949, when flow peaked at 13,900 cfs. A cubic foot per second is 538,171 gallons a day. The Arcadia flow was something like 27 billion gallons a day.
At Zolfo Springs, Saturday’s flow was 15,300 cfs, breaking another 1949 record of 8,370 cfs.
At State Road 60 at Bartow, the flow was a record-breaking 4,030 cfs, topping the previous record set in 2005 of 3520 cfs.
Lakes have risen, too. A section of Lake Howard Drive in Winter Haven has been closed because the road is underwater.