The South Asia Flash Flood Guidance System (South Asia FFGS) has been launched, to assist in the provision of improved early warnings in one of the world’s most populated regions.
Operated by the India Meteorological Department (IMD), the South FFGS is now providing the nation’s population with flash flood guidance and forecasts. IMD also acts as the regional center covering Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Sri Lanka, providing forecast products, data and training.
The South Asia FFGS is funded by the United States Agency for International Development/Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (USAID/BHA) and implemented by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the Hydrologic Research Center (HRC), while the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is a satellite data provider into the system.
It is part of a global FFGS program which currently provides early warnings to three billion people – 40% of the world’s population – across more than 60 countries. Under the program, the automated dissemination of information will leverage social media, so that the information reaches disaster management authorities in a timely manner.
Guidance for flash floods in the form of Threats (6 hours in advance) and Risks (24 hours in advance) will be provided by the system. This should enable all member countries to issue impact-based forecasting, at watershed and also city level, of flash floods.