flash flood

noun
a sudden and destructive rush of water down a narrow gully or over a sloping surface, caused by heavy rainfall.

Origin:
1935–40


See flood.
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World English Dictionary
flash flood
 
n
a sudden short-lived torrent, usually caused by a heavy storm, esp in desert regions

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
flash flood   (flāsh)  Pronunciation Key 
A sudden, localized flood of great volume and short duration, typically caused by unusually heavy rain in a semiarid area. Flash floods can reach their peak volume in a matter of a few minutes and often carry large loads of mud and rock fragments.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
There is nothing anyone can do to prevent the occurrence of flash flood
  producing rainfall.
Think of a flash flood of concrete and you get the picture.
If there is any possibility of a flash flood, move immediately to higher ground.
Check at the visitors center for current weather reports and flash flood
  potential before entering narrow canyons.
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