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.
The SEE-MHEWS-A project will benefit the National Meteorological and Hydrological Services of WMO Members from the region - that is Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, North Macedonia, Republic of Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovenia, Turkey and Ukraine. The Project Steering Committee, composed of the Directors of the NMHSs of the WMO Member States listed above, will manage the advisory system developed under the project.
The Middle East is one of the driest regions in the world, with many parts receiving less than 100 mm of rainfall per year. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports an expected precipitation decrease over the next century for large parts of the Middle East, a likely increase in the frequency and severity of droughts and a reduction in groundwater recharge rates.