Linking typhoon tracks with rainfall patterns and flood timing

Oct 11, 2012

Being able to predict the timing and amount of flooding during and following a hurricane or typhoon would improve early warning and mitigation efforts. However, variable typhoon tracks and interaction between typhoons and varied landscapes make flood prediction challenging.

Huang et al. investigated the detailed distribution of typhoon-induced rainfall over a mesoscale mountainous located in eastern Taiwan, a region that is regularly affected by severe typhoons-losses associated with typhoons in Taiwan can reach $500 million per year. The researchers analyzed high-resolution of 38 rainfall events during 2000-2010 in eastern Taiwan to study the relationship between typhoon track, , and the timing of peak flooding.

On the basis of the statistical characteristics of these events, they identify three different types of rainfall patterns. They find that the different types of rainfall patterns are correlated with different typhoon tracks and linked flood peak times to the rainfall types and typhoon tracks. For instance, the peak flood time for one of their identified rainfall patterns - a pattern with an approximately north- northeast-south-southwest oriented rainfall belt across the downstream area of the watershed they studied - was 3 hours earlier than peak flood time for other rainfall patterns.

They suggest that the relationships are due to the typhoons' interaction with the mountainous landscape in the region. Their study could lead to improved real- time flood warning systems in Taiwan and other typhoon-prone regions.

Explore further: Study shows air temperature influenced African glacial movements

More information: Linking typhoon tracks and spatial rainfall patterns for improving flood lead time predictions over a mesoscale mountainous watershed, Water Resources Research, doi:10.1029/2011WR011508 , 2012

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Taiwan to use mobile radars against typhoons

Aug 17, 2011

Taiwan will employ mobile radars and a network of satellites to improve predictions of typhoons, floods and other extreme weather phenomena, an official said Wednesday.

NASA: Songda becomes a super typhoon

May 26, 2011

As predicted, Typhoon Songda intensified and was a super typhoon with wind speeds estimated at over 130 knots ( ~145 mph) when NASA's TRMM satellite passed directly over head on May 26, 2011 at 0806 UTC (4:06 ...

NASA saw Tropical Storm Guchol's rainfall drench Japan

Jun 21, 2012

The first tropical storm of the season to make landfall in Japan was a soaker, and the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite captured its large area of rainfall as it moved over the big island.

Typhoon Megi unleashes its wrath

Oct 27, 2010

Though a storm’s strength is gauged by wind speed, tropical cyclones also pose a hazard because of the intense rain they bring to a region. This image shows the heavy rain Super-typhoon Megi unleashed ...

Recommended for you

Melting during cooling period

10 hours ago

(Phys.org) —A University of Maine research team says stratification of the North Atlantic Ocean contributed to summer warming and glacial melting in Scotland during the period recognized for abrupt cooling ...

Warm US West, cold East: A 4,000-year pattern

13 hours ago

Last winter's curvy jet stream pattern brought mild temperatures to western North America and harsh cold to the East. A University of Utah-led study shows that pattern became more pronounced 4,000 years ago, ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Melting during cooling period

(Phys.org) —A University of Maine research team says stratification of the North Atlantic Ocean contributed to summer warming and glacial melting in Scotland during the period recognized for abrupt cooling ...

Researchers see hospitalization records as additional tool

Comparing hospitalization records with data reported to local boards of health presents a more accurate way to monitor how well communities track disease outbreaks, according to a paper published April 16 in the journal PLOS ON ...

Ebola virus in Africa outbreak is a new strain

Scientists say that the Ebola (ee-BOH'-lah) virus that has killed scores of people this year in Guinea (GIH'-nee) is a new strain. That means it did not spread there from outbreaks in some other African nations.