Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities
Articles Information
Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities, Vol.1, No.4, Sep. 2015, Pub. Date: Jul. 23, 2015
Flash Flood Hazard in Dire Dawa, Ethiopia
Pages: 400-414 Views: 2716 Downloads: 6231
Authors
[01] Yonas Tadesse Alemu, Dire Dawa University, Department of Geography & Environmental Studies, Dire Dawa, Ethiopia.
Abstract
Dire Dawa, the second largest city of Ethiopia, has been suffering from disastrous floods in its history. The 2006 flooding was unprecedented aftermath caused severe impacts on human lives and property.This study aimed in identifying flood causative factors and the resulting socio-economic impacts. The results of the daily rainfall data analysis shows that, during the last decades, the highest values of rainfall intensity (Ip) have been increasing in the Dechatu catchment. The increase in rainfall intensity in the Dechatu catchment is constant since 1970. The mean peak rainfall intensity, Ipm (mm/24h), calculated from averaging the annual highest values (Ip) recorded in the study meteo-stations shows a marked increase in the Dechatu catchment. This result explains rainfall intensity is one of the factors for increased generation of flash floods in the city of Dire Dawa. One of the major causes for the high magnitude flood that hit the city in August 6, 2006 was the high intensity of rain that fell in the upland areas in the previous day. Similarly land-use change in the catchment particularly shrinking of natural forest in the upland has aggravated flood incidences. The results of land use change between 1985 and 2006 showed expansion of urbanized area from 39% to 56.33% and farmlands from 11.04% to 12.77%. On the contrary shrub lands decreased from 17.77% to 3.96% and woodland from 0.37% to 0.23%. Such Expansions of urbanized area and farmlands on the expenses of woodland and shrub land areas has a direct correlation with the potential for surface runoff generation. In the 2006 flood impacts in Dire Dawa, the socio-economic sector was severely affected and caused deaths of 256 people, 244 missing and more than 9956 people displaced and damage of properties for 882 small scale traders and 123 licensed traders was estimated to be 17146493 ET. Birr.It had also an enormous impact on the economic foundation of the city due to the expenditure for rehabilitation and reconstruction. The recurrent expenditure of the city increased by 43% for reconstruction and rehabilitation whereas the capital expenditure was kept static or even decreased. Overall direct and indirect damages of floods on agricultural; trade and infrastructural sectors of the city was estimated to be about 97,368,634.36 ET Birr.Therefore, enactment of land-use policy is important for future disaster mitigation. Moreover, promoting early warning system in the city is important to evacuate people before flood disaster occur.
Keywords
Dire Dawa, Flash Floods, Dechatu River, Flood Impacts, Rainfall Intensity, Land-Use Change
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