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Floods of 1998 in Bangladesh and Shrewsbury

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Causes, Effects and responses to flooding In Shrewsbury The Severn Valley floods, Shrewsbury, UK 1998: Causes The human causes of the floods were summed up by the then Shadow Countryside Minister Tim Yeo MP, he said 'the flooding had increased because of the housing developments on Greenfield sites.' By this he means that by covering the land with tarmac in urban areas humans have increased the rate of surface runoff and decreased the saturation levels of the ground. When surface runoff is high rainwater reaches the river faster. It would appear that the speed in which the water reached the river was too fast for the river to handle. The river filled up reaching bank-full discharge and then overflowing its banks onto the flood plain. The flood plain of the River Severn is built on, therefore, when the river floods it floods onto residential areas. With the building of these urban areas the amount of vegetation in the area surrounding the river was reduced, this affects the river two ways. It reduces the amount of interception, which in turn increases the speed of runoff into the river. The lack of vegetation also leads to the saturation of the ground. During the months of October and November the rainfall in the Severn Valley was high, as the water soaked into the ground it became saturated. ...read more.


However, people living within the Severn Valley complained that the warnings given were not clear enough and few people knew how bad it was. In the wake of the chaos, the Environment Agency demanded tighter controls on building on flood plain land. Lord De Ramsey, Chairman of the Environment Agency said: "Although we will never be able to stop flooding altogether, we must do everything we can to minimise the risk. Preventing development on flood plains is the first crucial step. The agency will continue to oppose such development, which not only increases the risk to life and property on the flood plain itself but also for adjoining areas." In Herefordshire more than 2,000 homes were cut off by flood waters for two days. The Army was put on standby to help, and RNLI lifeboats were drafted in, 70 miles from the sea, to provide care for the elderly. BANGLADESH FLOOD 1998 I. MAIN CAUSES OF THE FLOOD: Heavy rainfall in the upper catchment of the cross- boundary rivers as well as inside the country. Onrush of hill waters from the upstream of the Ganges and the Brahmaputra rivers due to heavy downpours in the Himalayas and the Mehgalaya hilly terrain's aggravated the flood situation. Normal flow of floodwater through rivers was hindered due to existence of high tide in the sea. The high tide was measured at a record 5.52 metres above the sea level and the low tide was 4.72 metres, it was recorded by FFWC on 10th September, 1998. ...read more.


The country experiences a hot summer of high humidity from late March to late June, a somewhat cooler but still a hot and humid monsoon from late June through October and a coll dry winter from November to the end of February. Day temperature ranges from 7 to 12degree centigrade in the cool months and in the other month it varies between 23 to 30 degree centigrade. DAMAGES CAUSED BY FLOOD 1998 LOSSES AND DAMAGES AS ON OCTOBER 04, 1998: 1. Total area affected by flood - about 1,00,000sq.km. (Area of Bangladesh is 1,48,393sq.km.) 2. Total Shortfall of production will be about 2.2 million MT 3. Number of District - 52 4. Number of Police Stations -366 5. Number of Affected Union Parishad - 3, 323 6. Number of Affected People - 3,09,16,351 7. Affected Standing Crops in Acre - 14,23,320 8. Number of Affected Homesteads - 9,80,571 9. Number of Death - 918 10. Cattle heads killed - 26,564 11. Road Damaged (km)- 15,927 12. Embankment Damaged (km)- 4,528 13. Number of Damaged Bridge /Culverts- 6,890 14. Number of Educational Institutions - 1,718 15. Number of Flood Shelter - 2,716 16. Number of People take refuge - 10,49,525 Bangladesh - Floods OCHA Situation Report The Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief as of 15 September 1998 provided the following update on flood damage: Districts Affected: 52 Thanas affected: 366 Persons affected: 30.6 million Total dead: 783 Crops damaged: 1,497,500 (acres) Houses damaged: 894,015 Roads damaged: 15,900 (km) Embankment damaged: 4,451 (km) Shelters: 2,661 Sheltered people: 1 million ...read more.

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