The Worst Natural Disaster In Colorado's History

By Zuri Anderson

August 30, 2023

Flooded river during persistent heavy rain.
Photo: SimpleImages / Moment / Getty Images

More and more climate-related mishaps are happening in the United States. From fearsome wildfires and blizzards to a super rare West Coast hurricane, it seems like the country is experiencing more extreme natural events. Not only do these occurrences disrupt the everyday lives of Americans, but they can also become dangerous.

While it seems like natural disasters are becoming more frequent, they may pale in comparison to what happened years ago. That's why 24/7 Wall St. compiled a list of the worst natural disaster in each state's history. Researchers say they "reviewed government sources on the weather event in each state’s history that caused the highest number of fatalities to determine the worst natural disaster in every state."

According to the website, Colorado's worst natural disaster was the Big Thompson Canyon Flood, the deadliest flood in the state's history. On July 31, 1976, residents of Larimer County were enjoying a summer's day when heavy rain suddenly poured down on the nearby slopes and canyon floor. Later that night, a flash flood washed away neighborhoods and killed 144 people, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

To read more about these historic natural disasters, visit for the full list.

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