With the rainy season close at hand, a number of safety measures have been recommended to the public.
People living in flood prone areas are advised to relocate to safer places and take every other precaution possible, whilst both drivers and pedestrians have also been urged not to force their way through floods, in order to avoid being swept away.
Mrs Francesca Martey, Deputy Director for Research, Ghana Meteorological Agency(GMA), gave the advice when she presented the agency’s seasonal forecast for 2019’s major rainy season, on Tuesday in Accra.
She gave a break down of the expected period for the start of the rainy season and said the rains were estimated to begin between the fourth week of March and the second week of April for the East Coast.
That for Cape Coast/Saltpond will occur between the second and fourth week of March, the West Coast between the fourth week of February and the second week of March and the Forest Zone between the first and third week of March.
The rest are between the fourth week of March and the second week of April for the country’s Transitional Zone area, the second and fourth week of April for the North, between the fourth week of April and the second week of May for the Upper East region and the third week of April to the first week of May for the Upper West region.
She said there was a high possibility of having rains accompanied by strong winds and lightening, which could cause localised floods.
Mrs Martey said there was thus the need for stake-holders, especially those directly concerned with disaster management, to educate the citizenry on the potential dangers of the pending season.
She said preparation also had to be made towards addressing negative effects of the season such as flooding, in order to minimise the toll of those effects.
Mr. Eric Esuman, Deputy Director General in charge of Support Service, GMA, who was chairman for the occasion, urged the media to be supportive of the GMA in announcing weather warnings to the public.
He said journalists should not hesitate to cross-check with the GMA, any information they came across on social media, adding, “sometimes someone pastes unto a social media platform, an old weather warning, and this creates unnecessary panic.”
“We also plead with you the media to send out weather warnings to the public on time,” Mr. Esuman said and added, that if a weather warning on a pending storm for example got to the public after the storm, it would be of no use then.
He said the doors of the GMA were opened to journalists who needed accurate information on the weather.