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Scientific Investigations Map 3300

Prepared in cooperation with the City of Hattiesburg, City of Petal, Forrest County, Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, Mississippi Department of Homeland Security, and the Emergency Management District

Prepared in collaboration with the National Weather Service

An Expanded Model: Flood-Inundation Maps for the Leaf River at Hattiesburg, Mississippi, 2013

By John B. Storm

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (1.20 MB)Abstract

Digital flood-inundation maps for a 6.8-mile reach of the Leaf River at Hattiesburg, Mississippi (Miss.), were created by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in cooperation with the City of Hattiesburg, City of Petal, Forrest County, Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, Mississippi Department of Homeland Security, and the Emergency Management District. The inundation maps, which can be accessed through the USGS Flood Inundation Mapping Science Web site at, depict estimates of the areal extent and depth of flooding corresponding to selected water levels (stages) at the USGS streamgage at Leaf River at Hattiesburg, Miss. (station no. 02473000). Current conditions for estimating near-real-time areas of inundation by use of USGS streamgage information may be obtained on the Internet at In addition, the information has been provided to the National Weather Service (NWS) for incorporation into their Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS) flood warning system ( The NWS forecasts flood hydrographs at many places that are often colocated with USGS streamgages. NWS-forecasted peak-stage information may be used in conjunction with the maps developed in this study to show predicted areas of flood inundation.

In this study, flood profiles were computed for the stream reach by means of a one-dimensional step-backwater model. The model was calibrated by using the most current stage-discharge relations at the Leaf River at Hattiesburg, Miss. streamgage (02473000) and documented high-water marks from recent and historical floods. The hydraulic model was then used to determine 13 water-surface profiles for flood stages at 1.0-foot intervals referenced to the streamgage datum and ranging from bankfull to approximately the highest recorded water level at the streamgage. The simulated water-surface profiles were then combined with a geographic information system (GIS) digital elevation model (DEM, derived from light detection and ranging (lidar) data having a 0.6-foot vertical and 9.84-foot horizontal resolution) in order to delineate the area flooded at each water level.

Development of the estimated flood inundation maps as described in this report update previously published inundation estimates by including reaches of the Bouie and Leaf Rivers above their confluence. The availability of these maps along with Internet information regarding current stage from USGS streamgages and forecasted stream stages from the NWS provide emergency management personnel and residents with information that is critical for flood response activities such as evacuations and road closures as well as for post flood recovery efforts.

First posted August 6, 2014

For additional information, contact:
Director, Mississippi Water Science Center
U.S. Geological Survey
308 South Airport Road
Jackson, MS 39208
(601) 933–2900

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Suggested citation:

Storm, J.B., 2014, An expanded model—Flood-inundation maps for the Leaf River at Hattiesburg, Mississippi, 2013: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3300, 13 sheets, 8-p. pamphlet,

ISSN 2329–132X (online)





Modeling Water-Surface Profiles

Inundation Mapping


References Cited

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