Flash floods are among the world’s deadliest natural disasters with more than 5 000 lives lost annually. Their social, economic and environmental impacts are significant. Accounting for approximately 85% of flooding cases, flash floods also have the highest mortality rate among different classes of flooding, including riverine and coastal. Flash floods differ from river floods in their short time scales and occurrence on small spatial scales, which makes flash flood forecasting a different challenge from large-river flood forecasting.
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A successful three and a half-year project in the Caribbean has demonstrated the benefits of strong collaboration between development agencies and local partner and of better weather, water and climate services to save lives and livelihoods of vulnerable communities.
The 63rd Session of the Caribbean Meteorological Council was held from 24-25 November 2022 at the Cayman Islands Airport Authority Conference Facility, George Town, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, under the auspices of the Government of Cayman Islands. The meeting focused on several priority areas of the WMO, including the UN Early Warnings for All Global Initiative and the Global Basic Observation Network. During the Opening Ceremony, Keynote Speaker and Chair of the 63rd Council, the Honourable G. Wayne Panton, Premier and Minister of Sustainability & Climate Resiliency, Cayman Islands, stressed that "Enhancing resiliency through national weather forecasting, hydrological services and multi-hazard early warning systems is essential to ensuring small island nations like the Cayman Islands can withstand the predicted impacts of climate change."
The Caribbean Meteorological Organization (CMO) has delivered two major milestones in the Climate Risk and Early Warning System (CREWS) Initiative’s Caribbean Project:
The Caribbean is gearing up for yet another active Atlantic hurricane season, compounded by the continuing challenges and constraints of the COVID-19 pandemic and the aftermath of a major volcanic eruption.
For the first time, forecasters from across the Caribbean have been participating in a major international atmospheric and oceanic field campaign, entitled, "Elucidating the Role of Clouds-Circulation Coupling in Climate" (EUREC4A). The field campaign is focused on the areas east and south of Barbados, from 20 January to 20 February 2020.