Verification of heavy rainfall warning over Bihar and Uttar Pradesh
Keywords:Heavy rainfall, Monsoon, Forecast verification
India Meteorological Department (IMD) issues heavy rainfall warning for a meteorological sub-division when the expected 24 hours rainfall over any rain gauge station in that sub-division is likely to be 64.5 mm or more. Though these warnings have been provided since long and are also now being issued for smaller spatial scales, very few attempts have been made for quantitative evaluation of these warnings. Hence, a study is undertaken to verify the heavy rainfall warning over the representative meteorological sub-divisions of east Uttar Pradesh (UP), west UP and Bihar during main monsoon months of July and August. For this purpose data of the recent 5 years (2001-2005) and also for another epoch of 5 years in the early 1970s has been taken into consideration. In this connection, the day when heavy rainfall is recorded over atleast two stations in a sub-division, has been considered as a heavy rainfall day for that sub-division.
This study of verification shows that probability of detection of heavy rainfall is 64% over Bihar, 52% over east UP and 53% over west UP for the recent 5 years. Compared to early 1970s, there has been slight improvement in the forecast skill during 2001-2005 with probability of detection increasing by about 10-20% and with decrease in missing rate and false alarm rate. However, the false alarm rates are still large indicating higher bias towards over-prediction. The synoptic conditions associated with the heavy rainfall events have been collected for the period 2001-05 and analysed. The analysis of the unanticipated heavy rainfall events suggests that though proper interpretation of synoptic charts and NWP outputs could improve the warnings, the forecast system available even today is still not capable to capture every heavy rain event in advance.
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