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Heavy rain coinciding with high tides could lead to localised flash floods in Dec and Jan

The Meteorological Service Singapore (MSS) has announced that it forecasts that the Northeast Monsoon season is expected to onset in late November 2016.

It said that this is the traditional rainy season in the southern ASEAN region, and comprises two phases, a wet phase (December – January) and a dry phase (February – March).

According to the MSS, the wet phase is characterised by short-duration moderate to heavy thundery showers mostly in the afternoon and on some days, extending into the evening. There is an average of 18 rain days in December, and 13 rain days in January.

The wet phase also experiences about two to four episodes of monsoon surges. In contrast, the dry phase (February – March), typically brings less rainfall, drier weather conditions and occasional windy conditions compared to the December – January period.

MSS said that it will issue prolonged monsoon heavy rain warnings during the Northeast Monsoon season, in addition to the regular weather forecast and warnings, when intense rain or prolonged monsoon rain is expected. It hopes that it will help members of the public better prepare for periods of heavy rain.

In December 2016 and January 2017, high tides of at least 3.2m are expected on some days. Heavy rain coinciding with high tides could lead to localised flash floods in the low-lying areas.

High Tides of at least 3.2m are expected on some days in December 2016 and January 2017

Source : MSS.
Source : MSS.

As part of flood monitoring efforts, The Public Utilities Board (PUB) said that it has a network of 170 closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras to monitor real-time road conditions in low-lying areas and hotspots. Members of the public can view 49 of these CCTV images which are refreshed every five minutes.

It also has 205 water level sensors installed in the island’s major drains and canals, which provide real-time data on water levels, and serve to enhance PUB’s live monitoring of site conditions during heavy storms and enable quick response. Information from all water level sensors is also available to the members of the public.

MSS said that during heavy rain events, members of the public can also be updated on rising water levels in drains or canals and flash floods via PUB’s Facebook and Twitter, PUB’s free mobile app MyWaters, and PUB’s website at https://app.pub.gov.sg/waterlevel/pages/WaterLevelSensors.aspx.

Members of the public can also subscribe to a free SMS alert service to keep tabs on the water level in a canal or drain at a designated location via PUB’s website – https://www.pub.gov.sg/drainage/floodmanagement/subscribesms

In addition, selected CCTV images of road conditions in low-lying areas and hotspots can be accessed via PUB’s website or MyWaters mobile app.

Members of the public are advised to exercise caution during the monsoon season should flash floods occur in the event of heavy storms. Motorists should avoid driving into flooded areas, as low visibility can obscure the depth of floodwaters. Pedestrians caught in a flash flood are advised to move to higher ground and refrain from walking through flood waters.

Members of the public can call PUB’s 24-hour Call Centre at 1800-CALL PUB (1800-2255 782) to report on any flood situation or NEA’s hotline at 1800-6003333 to report on any choked drains.