As flood alerts from concerned government institutions are being released, the Nigerian Meteorological Agency on Monday specifically declared that from August to October this year, 11 states will experience severe floods as their various soil moisture had reached or were close to saturation.
According to NiMet in its report on Rainfall Situation and Prospects of Flooding in August to October 2016, findings revealed that the saturation of soil moisture in the affected states was due to cumulative high intensity rainfall in June and July.
NiMet, in its latest flood alert, said, “After thorough analyses of rainfall data from our observatories nationwide for June and July, we wish to provide the following information and advisories to the public, especially those in the affected areas. Soil moisture has either reached saturation, or near saturation levels due to cumulative high intensity rainfall in some parts of the country in June and July.
“The affected states include Akwa Ibom, Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Kaduna, Kwara, Nasarawa, Yobe and Zamfara. This means that floods should be expected in these areas because the soil is no longer able to absorb more rainwater in the coming weeks which coincide with the peak rainy season.”
The agency in its 2016 Seasonal Rainfall Prediction, had stated that while many parts of Nigeria would experience lower than-normal total rainfall due to the effect of El Nino, flooding could still be experienced in such areas, particularly those that were naturally prone to it.
The SRP identified parts of the North-West, South-West and low-lying areas, as particularly vulnerable to flooding during 2016 rainy season.
These observations and projections were also in agreement with the 2016 Annual Flood Outlook that was released by the Nigerian Hydrological Services Agency.
NIMet advised governments, communities and individuals in these vulnerable parts of the country to take proactive actions such as clearing water channels and drainage, and also avoid activities that could block the free flow of flood water.