Flood Warning – Providing reliable advance information about possible flooding. Flood warning systems give people time to remove possessions and evacuate areas
Providing reliable, advance information about flooding is vital for communities under threat.
Warnings about floods are an important part of weather forecasts on TV and radio.
Countries' environmental agencies monitor rainfall, ice melt and river levels and issue warnings via newspapers, TV, radio and the internet when flooding is likely, so people can prepare.
This gives people time to try to protect their properties with sandbags and other means.
With timely warnings, many possessions can be saved.
However, some people – particularly those in less developed countries – may not be able to access the warnings.
In some cases, flash floods happen too quickly for a warning to be effective, even in highly developed countries.
Forecasting when floods will occur, and when they will reach their peak, is a complex task. It includes assessing the volume of rain, the speed of rainfall run-off and the rate of discharge of river channels. However, real-time flood forecasting for specific areas can be done by leading-edge artificial neural networks.