Sisi heard rain was expected over the radio just before floods swept through the Ghanaian capital Accra in 2015, but he didn’t foresee the impact on his community. More than 150 people died in those floods.
Push warning message
Next time he will be more prepared. He has downloaded the Flash Flood Forecasting app to his phone which provides him a push warning message and gives up-to-the minute accurate information about rising threats on a street-by-street basis. The app uses state-of-the-art meteorological and hydrological input and has been designed and developed by Royal HaskoningDHV along with partners 3Di, Infoplaza and NADMO and with support from VIA water.
With climate change and urbanisation leading to more flash floods and increasing impact, this is a solution which connects directly with local people’s lives – most Ghanaians have a mobile phone. “Besides structural measures we need innovative early warning systems that empower authorities, but also industries and inhabitants, to become more pro-active and reduce damage and casualties,” said Dr Hanneke Schuurmans water expert at Royal HaskoningDHV. “This is a generic application and more cities across the world are interested in its implementation.”