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Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 18, 1633-1645, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-18-1633-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
13 Jun 2018
On the relationship between atmospheric rivers, weather types and floods in Galicia (NW Spain)
Jorge Eiras-Barca1, Nieves Lorenzo2, Juan Taboada3, Alba Robles2, and Gonzalo Miguez-Macho1 1Non-Linear Physics Group, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain
2Ephyslab, Universidade de Vigo, Vigo, Galicia, Spain
3MeteoGalicia, Consellería de Medio Ambiente, Xunta de Galicia, Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Abstract. Atmospheric rivers (ARs) – long and narrow structures of anomalously high water vapor flux located in the warm sector of extratropical cyclones – have been shown to be closely related to extreme precipitation and flooding. In this paper we analyze the connection between ARs and flooding in the northwestern Spanish region of Galicia under a variety of synoptic conditions represented by the so-called weather types, a classification of daily sea-level pressure patterns obtained by means of a simple scheme that adopts the subjective procedure of Lamb. Flood events are identified from official reports conducted by the Spanish emergency management agency (Protección Civil) from 1979 to 2010. Our results suggest that, although most flood events in Galicia do not coincide with the presence of an overhead AR, ARs are present in the majority of severe cases, particularly in coastal areas. Flood events associated with ARs are connected to cyclonic weather types with westerly and southwesterly flows, which occur mostly in winter months. The link between ARs and severe flooding is not very apparent in inland areas or during summer months, in which case heavy precipitation is usually not frontal in nature but rather convective. Nevertheless, our results show that, in general, the amount of precipitation in flood events in Galicia more than doubles when an AR is present.
Citation: Eiras-Barca, J., Lorenzo, N., Taboada, J., Robles, A., and Miguez-Macho, G.: On the relationship between atmospheric rivers, weather types and floods in Galicia (NW Spain), Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 18, 1633-1645, https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-18-1633-2018, 2018.
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This paper analyzes the connection between the so-called atmospheric rivers (ARs, long and narrow structures of anomalously high water vapor flux located in the warm sector of extratropical cyclones) and floods in the northwestern region of the Iberian Peninsula through the use of the weather types classification adopting the subjective procedure of Lamb.
This paper analyzes the connection between the so-called atmospheric rivers (ARs, long and...
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