In the Caribbean region, flash floods can occur at any time or place and account for a significant portion of lives lost and property damaged in disasters. Efforts to improve early warning capabilities urgently need prioritizing in order to enable national authorities to undertake necessary measures to protect populations at risk from the impacts of extreme weather events and to strengthen national and regional capacity to develop timely and accurate flash flood warnings.
|The Global Flash Flood Guidance System with Global Coverage aims to strengthen national and regional capacity to develop timely and accurate flash flood warnings, and to fully integrate FFGS in the day-to-day operational activities of NMHSs|
Following expressions of need and interest in a regional Flash Flood Guidance System by the Dominican Republic and Haiti, a meeting was organized in collaboration with project partners from 7 to 9 September in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. It was the launch of the Haiti and Dominican Republic Flash Flood Guidance (HDRFFG) project. Hosted by the Oficina Nacional de Meteorología (ONAMET) of the Dominican Republic, the meeting was attended by representatives of both National Meteorological and Hydrological Services (NMHSs), WMO and the Hydrologic Research Center (HRC).
Participants could observe the operational weather analysis and forecasting capacities, capabilities and infrastructure of ONAMET, which will serve as the Regional Centre for the project. They also received first-hand information on weather analysis and forecasting, hurricane forecasting, Nowcasting, weather observation network, and connection to the Global Telecommunication System (GTS).
The project is part of the Flash Flood Guidance System (FFGS) with Global Coverage, a cooperative initiative between WMO, the United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Weather Service, HRC and the United States Agency for International Development Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA). It is primarily aimed at developing capacity within NMHSs to help society cope with hydrometeorological hazards, particularly flash floods. It also aims to establish closer collaboration and coordination between NMHSs and Disaster Management Authorities, thus enhancing regional cooperation.