Sudden, “highly-localised rains” in Amarnath, Jammu and Kashmir, on July 8 caused flooding and led to the deaths of at least 16 people and injuries to more than 20 others.


What is a cloudburst?

  • Cloudbursts are short-duration, intense rainfall events over a small area.
  • According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), it is a weather phenomenon with unexpected precipitation exceeding 100mm/h (or 10 cm per hour) over a geographical region of approximately 20-30 square km.
  • During the cloudburst, the relative humidity and cloud cover was at the maximum level with low temperature and slow winds. It happens because a high amount of clouds may get condensed at a very rapid rate and result in a cloudburst.


Will we see more such cloudbursts?

Several studies have shown that climate change will increase the frequency and intensity of cloudbursts in many cities across the globe.


Can we predict cloudbursts?

It is an extremely challenging task and is very difficult to model cloudburst. For hourly rainfall and cloudbursts, it is very difficult to simulate the intensity and location.