This report gives estimates of, and presents techniques for estimating, the magnitude of peak flows for streams in Maine for recurrence intervals of 2, 5, 10, 25, 50, 100, and 500 years. A flowchart in this report guides the user to the appropriate estimates and (or) estimating techniques for a site on a specific stream.
Section 1, 'Estimates of peak flows and maximum recorded flows at USGS streamflow-gaging stations,' contains peak-flow estimates and the maximum recorded flows at 98 U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) streamflow-gaging stations. In the development of the peak-flow estimates at gaging stations, a new generalized skew coefficient was calculated for Maine. This single statewide value of 0.029 (with a standard error of prediction of 0.297) is more accurate for Maine than the national skew isoline map in Bulletin 17B of the Interagency Advisory Committee on Water Data.
Two techniques are presented to estimate the peak flows for ungaged, unregulated streams in rural drainage basins. These two techniques were developed using generalized least squares regression procedures at 70 USGS gaging stations in Maine and eastern New Hampshire. Section 2, 'Estimating peak flows for ungaged, unregulated streams in rural drainage basins,' uses the final explanatory variables of drainage area and basin wetlands. The average standard error of prediction for the 100-year peak flow regression equation in section 2 was 48.6 percent to -32.7 percent. Drainage area was the only explanatory variable used in section 3, 'Estimating peak flows for ungaged, unregulated streams in rural drainage basins - Simplified technique.' The average standard error of prediction for the 100-year peak flow regression equation in section 3 was 80.3 percent to -44.5 percent.
Section 4 of the report describes techniques for estimating peak flows for ungaged sites on gaged, unregulated streams in rural drainage basins. Section 5, 'Estimating peak flows for ungaged, unregulated streams in urbanized drainage basins,' describes regression equations for use when a drainage basin is urbanized. These urban regression equations come from a previous USGS nationwide study. As stated in section 6, because peak flows on regulated streams are dependent on variable human actions, estimating peak flows at ungaged sites on regulated streams is beyond the scope of this report.