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Somalia Flood Update - Issued 31 October 2019

Compared to the previous three weeks, there has been a reduction of rainfall activities in most parts of Somalia as well as the Ethiopian highlands. However, moderate to heavy rains were recorded in Bay and Bakool regions and a few places within the Shabelle in the last couple of days. The northern parts of the country remained mostly dry. The good rains received so far have continued to replenish water sources further improving pasture growth and reducing water stress. There has been an improvement in livestock body conditions and milk production as well. While the river levels in Shabelle continued to increase reaching maximum holding capacity in Belet Weyne, there was a reduction of river levels along the Juba. Shabelle River: In Belet Weyne and surrounding areas, river levels reached its maximum carrying capacity on 24 October 2019 and has remained so up to date leading to overflow which has left most the town under water. Reports so far indicate tens of people have drowned or are missing. Satellite image analysis further indicate inundation of more than 2,000 Hectares of agricultural land. In Middle Shabelle floods have damaged more than 10,000 hectares of cropland at Jowhar and Mahaday Weyne following high river levels and open river breakages. In Jowhar, the river level reached the high flood risk level since late August, and has been fluctuating within this level to date. The river levels are expected to remain high along the entire channel of Shabelle as more waters from the Ethiopian highlands are still streaming in. High risk of flooding remains along the Shabelle in the coming week. Existence of river breakages (39 points identified and reported by SWALIM in September 2019) is likely to escalate the flooding situation unless urgent measures are taken. Juba River: Along Juba River the levels dropped gradually over the last week. Bardheere town in Gedo however remained inundated and the situation has started to improve in the last few days. The levels are expected to fluctuate in the coming week with a Moderate risk of flooding towards the end of the week. In Bay and Bakool regions: Heavy rains resulted into flash floods destroying cropland (sorghum, maize and cowpeas). Bur Hakaba, Baardale, Huddur and Qansadheere districts were the most affected. Moderate risk of flooding remain in this area. Puntland, Somaliland and Central regions: A tropical storm named KYARR has been developing in the northern Indian Ocean and is expected to reach Puntland and Somaliland in the next 72 Hours. Moderate rains and winds of low to medium strength will be experienced in both coastal and inland areas of these regions starting on 02 and 03 November 2019. It is advisable to take the necessary precautions since the winds associated with the tropical storm might lead to destruction of weak structures. Flash floods are also foreseen in these areas. The rainfall forecast for the coming week shows an increase of rainfall activities in many parts of Somalia. As a result, the current high river levels, and ongoing riverine flooding, along the Juba and Shabelle rivers are expected to continue in the coming week. Flash floods will also be experienced in low-lying areas where moderate rains are expected.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 16-10-2019

Moderate to heavy rains continued in many parts of Somalia. The Ethiopian highlands also continued to receive heavy rains in the last few days. The cumulative rainfall forecast for the next three and seven days is calling for moderate to heavy rains across the country as well as within the Ethiopian highlands.  The foreseen heavy rains may lead to a further increase in river flow along the Juba and Shabelle Rivers in Somalia, translating to a high risk of flooding along the two rivers. Areas to watch out for river flooding include the entire channel of Shabelle River as well as Gedo and Middle Juba regions along the Juba River. Flash floods are expected in built-up and low lying areas of Bay, Bakool and central regions given the forecast.

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Flood Advisory for Juba and Shabelle Rivers - Issued 07 October 2019

The Deyr rainy season continued to spread in space and magnitude during the last week. The last two days saw heavy rains in parts of Juba and Shabelle basins with some stations recording more than 100mm of rainfall. The Ethiopian highlands also received very heavy rains in the last few days. This has consequently led to increased river levels along the Juba and Shabelle Rivers both in Ethiopia and Somalia with some cases of river flooding. River levels along the Shabelle remained high in the last few weeks and continued to increase following the heavy rains. Unofficial field reports further indicate flooding in parts of Mustahil and Kalafo within the Shabelle basin in Ethiopia. The flood wave is expected to be transmitted downstream in Somalia in the coming few days leading to a further increase of river levels that may cause flooding along the River. Observed river levels of the Juba River which have been low in the previous week rose drastically in the last 24 hours. At Dollow and Luuq stations in Gedo region, there was 2m rise in the last 24 hours. Riverine flooding and flash floods have been reported in Dollow and the surrounding areas. The rainfall forecast for the coming week is calling for increased rainfall activities in many parts of the country including the Juba and Shabelle basins both in Ethiopia and Somalia. There is therefore high risk of flooding during this week along the two rivers given the current situation. Areas to watch along the Shabelle River include Jowhar town and its environs; where the river level is currently near bankfull level and other riverine towns in the lower Shabelle region. The situation could be further exacerbated by weak river embankments and open river banks. Other areas to watch along the Juba include Dollow and the mid reaches of the River.

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Somalia Flood Update: Issued 18-Oct-2019

Moderate to heavy rains continued in many parts of Somalia and within the Ethiopian highlands over the last one week. River levels at Belet Weyne (Shabelle) are currently very high and the trend is expected to continue reaching over bank in the coming few days. Along Juba, the river levels are also high. The cumulative rainfall forecast for the coming week is calling for moderate to heavy rains across the country as well as the Ethiopian highlands. The river levels will therefore continue to rise with a high risk of flooding along the entire two channels. Flash floods are expected in built-up and low lying areas of Bay, Bakool and central regions given the forecast.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 08-10-2019

Unusual heavy rains were recorded in parts of Juba and Shabelle Catchments in the last few days. Some of the stations that recorded significant amounts in the last three days include Mataban (120mm), Belet Weyne (60mm), Mogadishu (46mm), Dollow (136mm) and Luuq (67mm). Flash floods and riverine flooding have been reported in parts of Gedo region following the heavy rains. In Luuq district, unconfirmed acreage of cropped land has been inundated while several people living close to the Juba river in Dollow have been temporarily displaced. The rainfall forecast for the next three days is calling for moderate rains of up to 50mm cumulatively in many parts of the country. As the week progresses the rains will intensify and spread further in space, with many parts of the country recording 50mm and above. Heavy rains of up to 200mm are expected in the Ethiopian highlands during the forecast period. The heavy rains will lead to a further increase in river flow along the Juba and Shabelle Rivers in Somalia, which translates in a high risk of flooding along the two rivers. Areas to watch out for river flooding include the entire channel of Shabelle and Gedo region in Juba basin.

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Somalia Flood Update - Issued 22 October 2019

Rainfall activities persisted in the second and third weeks of October inside Somalia and within the eastern Ethiopian highlands. The rains have replenished water sources leading to a reduction of water stress and boosted both pasture growth and crop cultivation. There has been an improvement in livestock body conditions and milk production as well. On the downside, the heavy rains have led to increased river levels along the Juba and Shabelle rivers inside Somalia surpassing the high-risk thresholds for flooding in areas of Belet Weyne and Jowhar along the Shabelle and Bardheere along the Juba. The high river levels have consequently led to overflows, causing floods in low-lying areas along the two rivers. The worst affected areas along the Shabelle River include Belet Weyne in Hiraan and parts of Middle Shabelle where there has been destruction of property and inundation of farmlands. As of 22 October, the river level at Belet Weyne is at 7.8m which is about half a meter short of the full bank level. Over bank spillages from minor tributaries passing through Belet Weyne town have caused flooding leading to displacements of a significant number of households. The local authority and partners have started to evacuate vulnerable communities to higher grounds within Belet Weyne. There has also been river flooding in the Ethiopian highlands about 20 Km north of Belet Weyne, and this flood wave is expected to reach Somalia over the next one to two days if rainfall continues, further exacerbating the flood risk inside Somalia. Observed river levels have remained high at Jowhar and Mahadey Weyne districts where large swathes of croplands have been damaged by floods. Existing river breakages (39 points identified and reported by SWALIM in September 2019) could lead to increased flooding if not urgently mitigated. Dollow, Luuq, Bardheere and Buale districts in Gedo and Middle Juba Regions were also affected by river flooding along the Juba. Field reports indicate that four people lost their lives in Bardheere, and the floods have displaced an estimated 750 households; further, 250 livestock drowned, and the waters damaged about 1,200 farms. In Bay and Bakool regions, flash floods destroyed cropland (sorghum, maize and cowpeas) that were at the seedling stage. Low lying areas of Gedo were also affected by flash floods over the last one week. The rainfall forecast for the coming week shows a reduction of rainfall activities especially within the Ethiopian highlands. However, heavy rains are expected in Gedo, Bay and Bakool regions which may lead to flash floods in low-lying areas in these regions. The increasing trend of river levels is expected to continue in the coming week with flooding expected along the Shabelle and Juba rivers.

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Flood Alert

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 11-10-2019

Moderate to heavy rains have been reported in many places across the country as the Deyr season continues to spread. While there was an increase in the rainfall activities in Somaliland and the southern regions, the central parts and north eastern parts received little on no rains. The rainfall forecast for the next three days is calling for moderate rains of up to 50mm cumulatively in most parts of Somaliland, Southern regions and the Ethiopian highlands with the intensity expected to increase as the week progresses. Heavy rains of up to 200mm are expected in the Ethiopian highlands during the forecast period. The heavy rains will lead to a further increase in river flow along the Juba and Shabelle Rivers in Somalia, which translates in a high risk of flooding along the two rivers. Areas to watch out for river flooding include the entire channel of Shabelle River as well as Gedo and Middle Juba regions along the Juba River.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 30-09-2019

The cumulative rainfall forecast for the coming week indicates moderate rains in the northern areas and parts of South and central regions bordering Ethiopia. The upper parts of the Ethiopian highlands will also receive good rains during the week. Given the rainfall forecast and the existing high river levels along the Shabelle, there remains a moderate risk of flooding in the middle reaches of the river. Areas to watch out for floods include Mahadey Weyne, Jowhar, and Balcad districts riverine areas where there exist several open river banks and weak river embankments. River levels along the Juba are expected to rise at the week with no risk of flooding.

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Flood Update for Middle and Lower Shabelle - Issued 05-09-2019

Observed river levels along the Shabelle River in Somalia remained above the average at this time of the year since mid August following moderate to heavy rains in the upper parts of Ethiopian Highlands. The levels at the upper reaches of the river inside Somalia (Hiraan Region at Belet Weyne and Bulo Burti) increased sharply over the last three weeks, but have started to decrease in the last few days. Current river levels in the mid and lower reaches (Middle and Lower Shabelle regions) are significantly above the normal levels at this time of the year with some sections at Mahadey Weyne, Jowhar and Balcad districs experiencing over spillage leading to floods. River levels along Juba are within normal for this time of the year.

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Somalia Rainfall Forecast: Issued 27-09-2019

The Deyr 2019 rainy season (September-December) has kicked off in some parts of the country. Parts of the north eastern regions started to receive rains in mid-September. The last 24 hours also saw moderate rains in parts of the Gedo region in the south. The rains are expected to continue spreading in time and space during the coming weeks with the season scheduled to end in November and early December. The cumulative rainfall forecast for the next three days indicates light to moderate rains in scattered areas of the country, especially within Sool and Sanaag regions. The rains will then spread further as the week progresses with more intensity in the northern areas. The upper parts of the Ethiopian highlands will also receive good rains towards the end of the week. Most parts of the south and central areas will remain dry in the coming week. Given the rainfall forecast and the existing high river levels along the Shabelle, there is a moderate risk of flooding in the middle reaches of the river. Areas to watch out for floods include Mahadey Weyne, Jowhar, and Balcad districts riverine areas where there exist several open river banks and weak river embankments.

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