# Clarification of overbank flows

Apologies for what may be a very basic question, but I am struggling to understand the definition of overbank flow.

Overbank flow is defined along the lines of this: Water flow over the top of the bankfull channel onto the floodplain.

Does this flow include the flow that is in the channel? or is it only the flow that is over the channel?

I am working through a document that seems to say one thing with the words, and a different thing with the mathematics.

If Qf = overbank flow; Qb = bankfull flow:

Is the total flow = Qf, where Qf >= Qb so if Qf = Qb all flow is in the channel

Or, is total flow = Qf + Qb, flow in channel plus flow out of channel?