Greece experiencing heavy rainfall that could occur twice in 100 years

Fri, 8 Sep 2023 10:04 GMT
Greece experiencing heavy rainfall that could occur twice in 100 years

Theodoros Kolidas, Director of the Greek National Meteorological Office, stated that the rainfall, which has been effective in the country since 5 September and caused flooding in some regions, is a type of heavy rainfall that will occur once in 50 to 100 years for Greece.

Speaking to AA correspondent, Kolidas evaluated the heavy rains that have affected Greece in recent days and caused the death of 3 people.

Kolidas noted that the rainfall in the Thessaly region of the country on 5 September was the "heaviest rainfall" in Greece, according to the official measurements of the modern meteorological station, although the news archive of the Greek State Television ERT reported that the rainfall in Zagora in November 1986 was measured at 840 millimetres.

Stating that rainfall of similar intensity is encountered only in the Gulf of Genoa in the immediate vicinity, Kolidas stated that in Greece, heavy rains of this scale usually occur as a result of Mediterranean cyclones, as in 2020.

Stating that there was no Mediterranean cyclone this time, Kolidas said, "However, in the entire eastern part of Greece, we encountered an air current coming from the east. This air current carried intense moisture from the central and northern Aegean to the Thessaly region, where we saw heavy rain."

Kolidas reported that the humid air that reached the mountainous region in Pilio turned into a heavy rain that reached 750 millimetres.

The rain was as long as it was heavy

Pointing out that rainfall of up to 400 millimetres was observed in the flat areas in the region within 24 hours, Kolidas pointed out that the duration of heavy rain was also very long in this process.

"Heavy rainfall in Greece usually lasts on average 6-8 hours. This time the heavy rainfall lasted 24 hours or more in most areas. It was a big rain not only in terms of intensity but also in terms of duration."

Heavy rains in Greece, with a frequency of once in 50 to 100 years

Reminding that such heavy rains were experienced in Volos in 1955 and caused 27 people to lose their lives and even in 1887 there was a similar rainfall in the country, Kolidas said, "Such heavy rains are very rare. It happens only once in 50, 100 years in Greece."

Nevertheless, Kolidas noted that the impact of the climate crisis cannot be completely ignored.

More water accumulated in areas where it is difficult for water to reach the sea

Stating that it is easy for rainwater to mix into the sea from Pilio, which is a peninsula, but there is no such possibility in and around Larisa, which is relatively far from the sea and has large agricultural areas and plains, Kolidas pointed out that for this reason, water accumulation is higher in areas such as Kardiça, Larisa and Trikala.

"The waters continue to descend from the mountainous areas. Therefore, the problem is not only caused by rainfall but also by the flow of rivers. I don't know exactly, but probably a large part of the agricultural production in this region will also suffer."

Forest fires are also effective in the extent of flooding

Stating that not only this year's forest fires, but also the forest fires in previous years may have been effective in the floods seen, Kolidas continued his words as follows:

"Wherever there is a forest fire, we face such problems. The floods in Evia (Evia) in 2020 were caused by heavy rainfall, of course, but the floods were also caused by forest fires in the region in 2018."

Related News

Address: Miaouli 7-9, Xanthi 67100, GREECE.
Tel: +30 25410 77968.