Urban Flood Forecasting
The concept of using hydraulic models for urban flood forecasting has been around for many years. However, historically it has been very difficult to set up forecast models that can produce accurate flood predictions quickly enough to be of use for prevention or mitigation during large storm events. There are specific challenges arising from the necessarily short time frames and the associated rapid assessment that is required.
Advances in computer simulation & hardware have made real-time operation of stormwater, wastewater, river and combined sewer systems a reality. Richard Allitt Associates undertook an 18 month offline trial of ICMLive in partnership with Poole Borough Council, Bournemouth Borough Council & Wessex Water and we have now developed a fully operational model of the sewer networks covering a population of about 300,000, capable of producing & automatically sending alerts for predicted flood events.
State-of-the-Art Real Time Forecasting
We have refined the use of ICMLive to enable us to offer bespoke urban flood forecasting which allows local authorities & relevant bodies to take timely action to reduce the effects of flood events.
It is now possible to give street-by-street flood warnings to councils. The new system can be used in urban areas where conditions can create a flood risk with as little as six hours’ notice.
Automatic Flood Alerts
One key aspect of our flood forecasting is the ability to set up automated email alerts and other actions using user-defined triggers. Basic alerts include emails being sent to relevant people when impending flooding or CSO spills are predicted. It can also be set to automatically run simulations if a large rainfall event is predicted, to generate a more in-depth flood prediction.
- Local Councils can now get accurate predictions of location, depth, extent & timing of a predicted flood event, enabling action to prepare the catchment & warn the public.
- Water Company operational managers are informed about blockages, pump failure & other issues enabling them to:
•Schedule pump & gate operation
•Evaluate different control strategies
•Maximize the use of system storage
•Provide continuous evaluation of existing & proposed systems using real-world inputs
•Carry out continuous simulations
•Reduce energy CO2 costs