General News of 2014-03-29

Meteo warns of heavy rains this year

The Ghana Meteorological Agency (GMA) has predicted heavy rains for the months of April, May and June this year.

It has, however, warned that the country would also experience long dry spells in between the rains.

The agency has accordingly advised farmers to prepare their lands, plant early and also consult with agriculture extension officers for further directives.

In addition, it appealed to farmers to harvest water for use in anticipation of prolonged spells of dry season in between the rains.

The Head of Research of the GMA, Mr Charles Yorke, who announced this at a press briefing in Accra last Thursday, called for the adaptation of dam management for the release of excess water before the peak of the rainy season.

Caution to all

Giving the forecast, Mr Yorke advised Ghanaians to prepare for heavy rains.

He said the short rainfall intervals expected were a good sign for farmers, praying that this year’s predictions would be more accurate than those of previous years.

“There will be very good rains in the eastern part of the country, as well as the forest zones and some parts of the north,” he stressed.

Above-average rains

Compared to last year, which recorded less rainfall which fell below expectation, Mr Yorke said he was confident that “we are going to have a long rainy season and there will be no below expectation rains.”

This year’s forecast, he said, was arrived at following a meeting of the various meteorological agencies in the West African sub-region in Abidjan with additional input from the United States of America.

International collaboration

The readings, he said, had been further confirmed by the European Centre for Medium- range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), which is renowned for its accurate weather predictions.

The ECMWF seasonal forecast, he said, had indicates 50 to 80 per cent above normal rainfall in the eastern part of the country, adding that a reading of the sea’s temperature was indicative that there would be a release of more moisture from the sea to Ghana.

Mr Yorke added that apart from the transitional tones, notably Sunyani and Wenchi, most parts of the country were expected to experience long dry spells of 10 days after the onset of the rains.

However, he said, from the latter part of June to July, it was expected that there would be a reduction in rainfall, adding that normal to late cessation dates were expected across the entire country.

Updates

The acting Director General of the GMA, Group Captain Stephen Komla said the agency would be giving the Ghanaian public updates on the weather forecasts throughout the period.

He said there was serious collaboration among various meteorological agencies in West Africa in the seasonal forecasts for accuracy and reliability.

The GMA, he said, was represented on the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) and that they had been briefed on the forecasts in order to prepare them adequately for the rains.

Source: graphic.com.gh
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