Theoretical and Applied Climatology

, Volume 121, Issue 1–2, pp 87–97 | Cite as

Estimation and prediction of maximum daily rainfall at Sagar Island using best fit probability models

  • S. Mandal
  • B. U. Choudhury
Original Paper


Sagar Island, setting on the continental shelf of Bay of Bengal, is one of the most vulnerable deltas to the occurrence of extreme rainfall-driven climatic hazards. Information on probability of occurrence of maximum daily rainfall will be useful in devising risk management for sustaining rainfed agrarian economy vis-a-vis food and livelihood security. Using six probability distribution models and long-term (1982–2010) daily rainfall data, we studied the probability of occurrence of annual, seasonal and monthly maximum daily rainfall (MDR) in the island. To select the best fit distribution models for annual, seasonal and monthly time series based on maximum rank with minimum value of test statistics, three statistical goodness of fit tests, viz. Kolmogorove–Smirnov test (K-S), Anderson Darling test (A 2 ) and Chi-Square test (X 2) were employed. The fourth probability distribution was identified from the highest overall score obtained from the three goodness of fit tests. Results revealed that normal probability distribution was best fitted for annual, post-monsoon and summer seasons MDR, while Lognormal, Weibull and Pearson 5 were best fitted for pre-monsoon, monsoon and winter seasons, respectively. The estimated annual MDR were 50, 69, 86, 106 and 114 mm for return periods of 2, 5, 10, 20 and 25 years, respectively. The probability of getting an annual MDR of >50, >100, >150, >200 and >250 mm were estimated as 99, 85, 40, 12 and 03 % level of exceedance, respectively. The monsoon, summer and winter seasons exhibited comparatively higher probabilities (78 to 85 %) for MDR of >100 mm and moderate probabilities (37 to 46 %) for >150 mm. For different recurrence intervals, the percent probability of MDR varied widely across intra- and inter-annual periods. In the island, rainfall anomaly can pose a climatic threat to the sustainability of agricultural production and thus needs adequate adaptation and mitigation measures.


Return Period Livelihood Security Empirical Cumulative Distribution Function Maximum Daily Rainfall Probability Distribution Model 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of GeographyUniversity of CalcuttaKolkataIndia
  2. 2.Division of Soil ScienceICAR Research Complex for NEH RegionUmiamIndia

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