Research Spotlight: The rain that drowned Pakistan could have been predicted



[1] In the middle of the week, during the heart of summer, at the onset of the 2010 monsoon season, the northern end of Pakistan was pounded by torrential rain. Some areas of the country were drowned in 300 millimeters (11.8 inches) of rain over 4 days—10 times the seasonal average. The extreme rainfall caused widespread flooding, killing 2000 people and causing more than $40 billion in damage by the time it let up and the water withdrew. A new analysis by Webster et al. suggests that some of this damage might have been prevented, because the heavy rains that triggered the flooding could have been predicted. (Geophysical Research Letters, doi:10.1029/2010GL046346, 2011)