Accra may well be on course for a flood catastrophe if this year’s rain forecasts by the Ghana Meteorological Agency comes to pass.
Hydrologist, Wise Ametepe, said Monday that “there will be complete disaster” in the capital if rains exceeding 40 millimetres are recorded -- unless authorities take drastic steps to stem the floods that will ensue.
“Even when we have 40 millimetres of rainfall [there is flooding]. Some time past, 40 millimetres of rainfall would not have caused flooding; 50 millimetres would not have caused flooding.
"In 1995 the rainfall that caused flooding was 249 millimetres which lasted between four to six hours,” he said on PM Express.
Now, however, overcrowding, lack of proper drainage system among other factors will mean many residents will be displaced after just about two hours of heavy rains.
Photo: Mr Ametepe studies distribution, circulation, and physical properties of the earth's underground and surface waters.
The Meteorological Agency has predicted thunderstorms and heavy rains this rainy season – from March to November in the south of Ghana.
Head of Forecast at the Agency, Joseph Portuphy, has said Ghanaians should brace themselves for more rainfall in the middle belt and coastal areas.
Floods in the capital especially and other parts of the country haved claimed lives this month.
A total of seven bodies were retrieved from flood waters at different parts of the capital following heavy rains on Sunday, April 14, 2019
The National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) said four of the seven bodies were recovered from flood waters at Adjei-Kojo, a suburb of Accra.
The bodies of a husband and wife – both military officers – were among the seven retrieved from flood waters by NADMO after the Sunday rains.
S/Sgt Arthur Jabez, 45 and his wife WO Sarah Kuadzi, 40 were travelling in a military pick up from a funeral in Tema when their vehicle got caught in the flood waters at a suburb along the motorway known as Adjei-Kojo.
These deaths bring to 12, the total number of lives lost as a result of floods in Accra in just a week.
Similar downpour on April 7, also claimed five lives.
NADMO is still searching for the bodies of a six-year-old boy and an adult male who were swept away by flood waters at Sakaman and Ablekuma, respectively. The bodies of man who was pushed into the Odaw River around the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange and that of the 11-month old baby is also being searched for.
Meanwhile, government said it has allocated ¢197 million for the desilting choked drains and other drainage works in the country.
Addressing the press in a joint interaction between her Ministry and the Greater Accra Metropolitan Water and Sanitation Projects, Cecelia Dapaah said the contract for the works has already been awarded by the Ministry of Works and Housing.
Watch more of Mr Wise Ametepe submissions and advice to the government and Accra residents about the rains in the video below.