Roshydromet Calls for Evacuation Plans and Public Drills to Bolster Flood Defense

Roshydromet Calls for Evacuation Plans and Public Drills to Bolster Flood Defense


Effective flood preparedness requires a comprehensive approach, according to Roshydromet (Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring) specialists. This means going beyond simply reinforcing physical structures and includes developing evacuation plans, training the public, and stockpiling essential supplies.

Vadim Petrov, Chairman of the Public Council at Roshydromet (the Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring), emphasized this point. He highlighted Roshydromet's modern capabilities for significantly improving weather forecasts, particularly those related to dangerous weather events like floods.

However, Petrov warns that climate change is causing more frequent and intense floods. Traditional hydrological and meteorological models based on historical data might not account for these new trends, leading to less accurate forecasts.

Petrov commented on a recent Izvestia meeting held in Arkhangelsk regarding security issues in the Northwestern Federal District. He acknowledged that receiving a flood warning a month in advance theoretically allows local authorities time to prepare. However, the ability to reinforce dams during this timeframe depends on numerous factors, including available resources, the current condition of existing structures, and the severity of the predicted flood. Petrov emphasizes that strengthening earthen embankments, like the one in Orsk, can require significant resources and effort, which might not be readily available on short notice.

The rising number of extreme weather events necessitates adapting approaches to building hydraulic structures, according to Petrov. He argues for integrating climate models into dam construction decisions, including revising building codes to reflect new realities.

Petrov cites Roshydromet data, stating that Russia experiences an average of 900-1000 dangerous weather events annually. Last year alone, 1,191 such events were recorded, with 448 causing significant damage. The scale of these events has been increasing over time. However, Petrov highlights that preventative measures successfully mitigated 96% of these dangerous phenomena.

This news emphasizes the need for a multi-pronged approach to flood preparedness. While reinforcing physical defenses remains important, Roshydromet experts advocate for a stronger focus on evacuation plans, public education, and stockpiling essential supplies to effectively manage flood risks in a changing climate.

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