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The Use of an Automated Nowcasting System to Forecast Flash Floods in an Urban Watershed

The Use of an Automated Nowcasting System to Forecast Flash Floods in an Urban Watershed Flash flooding represents a significant hazard to human safety and a threat to property. Simulation and prediction of floods in complex urban settings requires high-resolution precipitation estimates and distributed hydrologic modeling. The need for reliable flash flood forecasting has increased in recent years, especially in urban communities, because of the high costs associated with flood occurrences. Several storm nowcast systems use radar to provide quantitative precipitation forecasts that can potentially afford great benefits to flood warning and short-term forecasting in urban settings. In this paper, the potential benefits of high-resolution weather radar data, physically based distributed hydrologic modeling, and quantitative precipitation nowcasting for urban hydrology and flash flood prediction were demonstrated by forcing a physically based distributed hydrologic model with precipitation forecasts made by a convective storm nowcast system to predict flash floods in a small, highly urbanized catchment in Denver, Colorado. Two rainfall events on 5 and 8 July 2001 in the Harvard Gulch watershed are presented that correspond to times during which the storm nowcast system was operated. Results clearly indicate that high-resolution radar-rainfall estimates and advanced nowcasting can potentially lead to improvements in flood warning and forecasting in urban watersheds, even for short-lived events on small catchments. At lead times of 70 min before the occurrence of peak discharge, forecast accuracies of approximately 17%% in peak discharge and 10 min in peak timing were achieved for a 10 km 2 highly urbanized catchment. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Hydrometeorology American Meteorological Society

The Use of an Automated Nowcasting System to Forecast Flash Floods in an Urban Watershed

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References (37)

Publisher
American Meteorological Society
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 American Meteorological Society
ISSN
1525-7541
DOI
10.1175/JHM482.1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Flash flooding represents a significant hazard to human safety and a threat to property. Simulation and prediction of floods in complex urban settings requires high-resolution precipitation estimates and distributed hydrologic modeling. The need for reliable flash flood forecasting has increased in recent years, especially in urban communities, because of the high costs associated with flood occurrences. Several storm nowcast systems use radar to provide quantitative precipitation forecasts that can potentially afford great benefits to flood warning and short-term forecasting in urban settings. In this paper, the potential benefits of high-resolution weather radar data, physically based distributed hydrologic modeling, and quantitative precipitation nowcasting for urban hydrology and flash flood prediction were demonstrated by forcing a physically based distributed hydrologic model with precipitation forecasts made by a convective storm nowcast system to predict flash floods in a small, highly urbanized catchment in Denver, Colorado. Two rainfall events on 5 and 8 July 2001 in the Harvard Gulch watershed are presented that correspond to times during which the storm nowcast system was operated. Results clearly indicate that high-resolution radar-rainfall estimates and advanced nowcasting can potentially lead to improvements in flood warning and forecasting in urban watersheds, even for short-lived events on small catchments. At lead times of 70 min before the occurrence of peak discharge, forecast accuracies of approximately 17%% in peak discharge and 10 min in peak timing were achieved for a 10 km 2 highly urbanized catchment.

Journal

Journal of HydrometeorologyAmerican Meteorological Society

Published: Jan 19, 2005

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