The Ghana Meteorological Agency (GMET) has warned that floods in Accra are going to increase this year due to the low resilience of the area to adapt to heavy rains.
It said the 2020 season was going to be mostly similar to or slightly lower in terms of rainfall amount and distribution than last year’s.
However, it said, the vulnerability of residents in Accra had increased as a result of the continuous construction of structures in water areas, inadequate and choked drainage systems, among others.
At a press briefing in Accra yesterday, the Deputy Director and Head of Research and Applied Meteorology of the GMET, Francisca Martey, advocated the need for Ghana to improve on safety mechanisms, particularly within lowland areas in Accra, to ensure individual safety.
According to the Agency, areas such as Kwame Nkrumah Circle, Weija and the Graphic road will be the hardest hit owing to made-made factors including chocked drains and buildings blocking waterways.
She also urged individuals residing in lowland areas in Accra to move to higher grounds or safer places before the rains set in, adding that there should also be an improvement in the capacity of the national health systems and national platforms for disaster risk reduction.
Projecting when the rainy season would start, Mrs Martey said the rains were expected from the final week of February to the third week in March in the forest zone, with the coastal belt, comprising the west and the east, expecting them from the first week of March through to the second week in April.
Giving a breakdown of the 2020 seasonal forecast for the country, Met office said early onset rains were expected over most places in the forest zone of the country, adding that the rest of the country would experience normal onset, with the exception of the Upper East Region, which would have a late onset.
The agency added that the National Disaster Management Organization(NADMO) are always updated with information to enable them to prepare adequately to deal with disasters.
According to the met office, April/May/June (AMJ) was expected to have near-normal rainfall for most places in the country, adding that the Western Forest Zone, the Upper East Region and most places in the Upper West Region would experience below-normal-to-near-normal rainfall.
She said during the later stages of the rainy season, nine to 12 days of dry spell was expected over most places in the northern part of the country, whereas normal cessation dates were forecast for all the various zones of the country.
The agency, warned that there was a high probability that this year’s rains would be accompanied by strong winds and lightning and advised the transport services to adhere to safety precautions.
He also advised light aircraft to take utmost care and avoid flying through deep convection clouds that were associated with severe turbulence and lightning, especially in the afternoon.