How Harvey’s massive rainfall compares to other major North American floods

Harvey dumped nearly three times the amount of rain seen in one of Canada’s worst storms

Unprecedented rainfall has forced tens of thousands of people from their homes in parts of Texas and Louisiana in the wake of Tropical Storm Harvey.

The amount of rain that fell on the region in less than a week rivals the quantity of precipitation some Canadian cities get in a year. It’s also nearly three times the amount of rain that poured down on Harrow, Ont. in 1989 – one of Canada’s most intense storms on record.

READ: How Canadians can help victims of Hurricane Harvey

Many factors influence how a city will handle mass rainfall, from its topography and layout to its drainage systems, infrastructure and previous weather patterns, to name a few.

The Calgary floods of 2013, for example, were exacerbated by heavy rains in the previous few days – not to mention the spring melt. The ground simply couldn’t absorb the mass showers that fell on the city in just a couple days.

With that in mind, however, here’s a look at how Harvey compares to other major flood events in North America by rainfall levels:



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