Experts say Bangladesh should be better prepared to minimise the consequences of flash floods in the country’s haor region. They came up with this suggestion at a workshop in the city on Tuesday. The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) arranged the validation workshop at the Department of Disaster Management aiming to coordinate flood response implementation and validate the level of flooding that would trigger an emergency response.
Haor people are feeling worried about protecting their paddy from flash floods that may happen any time. Flash flood destroy boro crops especially in seven haor districts - Kishoreganj, Netrakona, Sunamganj, Moulvibazar, Habiganj, Sylhet and Brahmanbaria every year. The farmers of these areas are the worst sufferers as flash flood pushes them into extreme poverty every year.
Flash flood may occur in the low-lying areas of these districts due to onrush of upstream waters coupled with moderate to very heavy downpours anytime. Apart from damaging crops, people living there may also face serious difficulties due to flash flood water like in the past.
Damaged and affected dams and
embankment will have to
be repaired immediately to protect
lives and livelihoods
The onrush of upstream waters coupled with moderate to very heavy downpours also breach embankments submerging the habitats. As these existing embankments have already lost their capacity they cannot protect people’s lives and properties effectively.
The government must repair vulnerable embankments on an emergency basis. As the country is the worst sufferers of the consequence of climate change, sustainable embankment management appears as the need of the time.
The government will also have to enhance participatory embankment construction with collaboration of local authorities. Earlier, it has taken up four projects to construct sustainable embankments in the flood-prone areas of the country. But due to lack of appropriate design and construction of embankments the flood-prone districts remains fully unprotected.
Emergency embankments will have to be built in those areas to protect the people and their farm lands filled with boro paddy immediately. Keeping the devastation caused by the flash flood in mind, the government should remain ready with all-out measures to face the catastrophe. Damaged and affected dams and embankment will have to be repaired immediately to protect lives and livelihoods.