A conceptual flash flood early warning system for Africa, based on terrestrial microwave links and flash flood guidance

A conceptual flash flood early warning system for Africa, based on terrestrial microwave links and flash flood guidance

This journal article describes a conceptual flash flood early warning system for developing countries, with a particular focus on the system that is currently being developed for Kenya. The conceptual system uses rainfall intensity data from terrestrial microwave communication links and the geostationary Meteosat Second Generation satellite – two systems that are already in place and operational. The system will be maintained and operated through a public-private partnership, which includes a mobile telephone operator, a national meteorological service and an emergency relief service. The mobile telephone operator acts as both the supplier of raw input data and the disseminator of early warnings. It is argued that the early warning system could significantly reduce the number of fatalities due to flash floods, improve the efficiency of disaster risk reduction efforts and play an important role in strengthening the resilience to climate change of developing countries in Africa.

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