Thank You Army Corp of Engineers

If you’ve been following the news from New England you are aware that a major flood event is in progress. This morning the NECN weatherman Matt Noyes said that this was the worst flooding we’ve had since the floods of August 1955. This got me thinking about the West Hill Dam in Uxbridge and how we southern New Englanders should all thank the Army Corps of Engineers. They built the dam specifically to prevent the devastation and loss of life that happened in 1955. Looking at the records since then I feel that this dam has been a resounding success. Since its completion in 1961 the floods on the Blackstone have been controlled to less than 16 feet at Woonsocket as opposed to the nearly 22 foot record from 1955. Predictions from the NWS are for 18 feet in Woonsocket for this current flood, well below the extremely dangerous 22 feet that caused so much loss of life. UPDATE 3/30 22:30 Forecast has been lowered to 14 feet @ Woonsocket

The main reason we are so much safer now is the Army CoE’s excellent design and operation of the West Hill Dam. As you can see in this graph, yesterday afternoon they closed the gates of the dam stopping the entire West River from adding to the Blackstone’s flood level.

USGS20100330

This activation of the dam is going to change the look of the dam area from what we usually see in this Google Maps satellite view.

To what is in this photo from the West Hill Dam web site.

WestHillDamPhoto

More information:

USGS WaterWatch — Maps and graphs of current water resources conditions

Worcester Telegram & Gazette’s Weather notebook – Rivers rise as rain falls

Vaccine Pink Book Graphs

In a comment by DrKnow over at Orac’s place I learned about the CDC’s book “Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases”¬†aka “The Pink Book: Course Textbook”. It isn’t written for the layman but the graphs in it are very informative. I’ve clipped some of the graphs from some of the chapters and made them into a single picture so you don’t have to find each one separately. (Click picture to enlarge)

VaccineGraphs

 

Some of the graphs show when the vaccines where introduced, on the graphs without the labels can you figure out roughly when the vaccine was introduced?

Check your answers in the Pink Book, I’m guessing most of my readers will be able to get the answers right within +/- 5 years or so.