EXPERTS MEET AND SEEK SOLUTIONS ON FLOODING
City Manager met with the NCDC engineers this week and sought solutions following the unprecedented floods, overwhelming the drainage capacity in the city.
A quick investigation was made for the possible causes of the flood. There were several reasons that were found to be the cause of the flooding.
A Papua New Guinean hydrology expert based in Brisbane was also consulted for the unprecedented flooding.
He advised that the high-intensity downpour occurred over two hours, so the impact was massive and unprecedented.
“No well-designed drainage system would have stood that volume of water. The pit openings cannot capture the amount of surface flow that I saw in those videos.
It is just too much flow. This is the climate change effect. Rainfall intensities are getting higher. New Zealand just got hit two months ago like that. The surface flow overwhelms everything.”
Other causes include poor community behaviors, sanitation and hygiene, causing blockages to the drainage system.
Fridges, washing machines, tires and other household items were found in the culverts, and large amounts of waste, silt, betel-nut husks and plastics were found to have been thrown into the drains, including uncollected wastes.
Mr Peter Warupi, who is the National Weather Forecaster, has confirmed the intensity of the rain is the main reason for the flooding.
He added that the rainfall data was 145.8mm over 3 hours. He said it was above the average rainfall data.
He continued April is the month for monsoon rains, which will continue in the next 2 or 3 days.
The average rainfall in the entire wettest month of March is between 190 – 233 mm. Rainfall in one day with 145.8mm rain equals one month of rain just fell in 3 hours yesterday.
The city experienced flash floods everywhere, but the most affected were Jackson’s Airport, Hohola, 8-mile and Malolo estate.
These housing estates had poor drainage systems due to the digging of the mountain at the back by developers respectively. The poor hygiene practised by communities didn’t help.
NCDC will take immediate action to fix the situation, said City Manager Ravu Frank.
Mr Frank said he would engage experts to do the hydrology, audit the drainage network, and develop and propose solutions.
He added: “In the meantime, we have scaled up the cleaning and unblocking of the drains.
“We also assure everyone, we have been fixing the problem at Hohola, and we will work with NAC to resolve the issue of the collapsed bridge at the airport.
“We will get the developers at 8-mile, including Malolo Estate, to address the problems there too.” assured Mr Frank.
Frank added that we would simultaneously start work on another three locations out of the 26 hotspots as soon as the notice period for those encroaching on the drainage reserves is demolished.
“NCDC would like to remind its city residents to exercise caution when driving on wet roads and carefully or refrain from driving through flood water. Plan your journey ahead of time. “Allow extra travel time and adhere to all signs. Stay Safe.”