New Publication “OFF the RADAR” Examines Consequences of High Impact Weather Events

Periperi U partner RADAR, based at Stellenbosch University South Africa has just published its findings from research on severe weather events that occurred between 2011 and 2014, the Western Cape province of South Africa.

Between 2011 and 2014, the Western Cape was severely affected by five high impact weather events that led to four provincially gazetted flood disasters. All five of the flood-triggering weather processes were associated with identifiable cut-off low (COL) weather systems that respectively passed through the province between 7-9 June 2011, 13-14 July 2012, 7-11 August 2012, 15-17 November 2013 and 6-10 January 2014.

The resulting disasters were characterised by widespread flooding, with impacts reported across most of the Western Cape Province. Outside of the Cape Metro, twelve people lost their lives, while more than 23,000 were affected in informal settlements and low-cost housing areas, as well as farms and more affluent areas. Flash-flooding associated with the 15 November 2013 COL forced the rescue of 121 patients from the Mediclinic Vergelegen in Somerset West, the first evacuation of an entire hospital recorded on the continent. The same system affected 18,000 residents in 44 informal settlements within Cape Town.

The research was undertaken by the Research Alliance for Disaster and Risk Reduction (RADAR) at Stellenbosch University, in collaboration with the Western Cape Provincial Disaster Management Centre and the Western Cape provincial Departments of Agriculture and Transport and Public Works.

The synthesis report  contains four detailed background reports were completed for each of the four high impact weather events, including their hydro-meteorological attributes.

These can be accessed by clicking on the hyperlink below;

Download the Synthesis Report

Download the Appendix