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Development of an early warning system for flash floods in Wadi Watier – Sinai desert

maandag, 6 juni, 2011 - 16:00
Campus: Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering campus
E
0.12
Ahmed Youssef Sayed Abd El Khalek
doctoraatsverdediging

Flash floods can cause important economic damages in arid areas and even the
loss of lives. The PhD research contributed to the development and implementation
of an innovative early warning system for flash floods in Wadi Watier in the South
Sinai desert (Egypt): the Flash Flood Manager (FlaFloM). FlaFloM aims to protect
the city of Nuweiba from the flash-flood hazards and contributes to the wise use of
floodwater.
An intensive hydrological analysis have been carried out using hydrometeorologic
ground station data and satellite data for the study area, followed by the
development of a custom-built rainfall-runoff hydrologic model to reflect the arid
conditions of the study area using limited observation data. The research also
includes a sensitivity and uncertainty analysis for the developed tools and the data
used. The research work this contributed to the better understanding of the
behaviour of flash floods in arid and semi-arid regions.
The FlaFloM system has been in operation since December 2009. It is used by the
Crisis and Disaster Management Centre of the South Sinai governorate. The system
resulted in extra time to spread warnings and take action for the competent
authorities. As such, the system succeeded in providing a flood warning two days
in advance in January 2010 and protected the city of Nuweiba.