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MDT uses peak-flow frequency data (i.e., 100-year flood) to design highway infrastructure, secure floodplain permits, and perform stream restoration activities. The United States Geological Survey (USGS), in cooperation with MDT, developed regression equations which use channel width as a predictor to provide peak-flow frequency estimates to MDT. The research developed channel width-based regression equations that could increase accuracy and reduce uncertainty when determining flood magnitudes and frequencies. Channel width measurements are commonly obtained through on-site surveys. However, this project evaluated the use of aerial photography and other remote measurement methods to quickly estimate channel widths to reduce the need for on-site surveys.

Final Products

Peak-Flow Variability, Peak-Flow Informational Needs, and Consideration of Regional Regression Analyses in Managing the Crest-Stage Gage Network in Montana

Scientific Investigations Report 2021-5063

Regional Regression Equations Based on Channel-Width Characteristics to Estimate Peak-Flow Frequencies at Ungaged Sites in Montana Using Peak-Flow Frequency Data through Water Year 2011

Scientific Investigations Report 2020-5142