Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief

Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief


Monitoring Emergencies



From official sources (O.S.) and media (M). It does not represent PAHO's official position.

Colombia 7/23/2014

Drought. Seven departments and 58 municipalities on the Caribbean Coast affected by water shortage. Declaration of public calamity in Montería (Córdoba) and in nine rural areas in Cúcuta (Norte de Santander). Meeting of the National Committee for Disaster Management analyzing the National Contingency Plan for the dry season and possible El Niño phenomenon. UNGRD has a budget of 35,000 million pesos (approximately US$ 19 million) to strengthen SNGRD institutions and entities in water supply activities, prevention and response to fires. National government prepares mitigation measures. (o.s.: UNGRD, Plan de Contingencia Nacional;  m.: El Espectador, El Heraldo, Caracol).
Sucre department. Tolú municipality. Oil spill in the ocean threatens the beaches of the municipality. No damage to communities at this moment. National response and from the Central Pipeline Company to control the spill. (o.s.: UNGRD, m.: RCN).

Mexico 7/23/2014

State of Tamaulipas. Ciudad Madero municipality. Fire at oil storage tank leaves nine people with dehydration and minor burns. Evacuation of three districts and of the refinery. Local response to control the fire. (o.s.: PEMEX; m.: El Universal, Milenio).

Colombia 7/23/2014

Drought. Seven departments and 58 municipalities on the Caribbean Coast affected by water shortage. Declaration of public calamity in Montería (Córdoba) and in nine rural areas in Cúcuta (Norte de Santander). Meeting of the National Committee for Disaster Management analyzing the National Contingency Plan for the dry season and possible El Niño phenomenon. UNGRD has a budget of 35,000 million pesos (approximately US$ 19 million) to strengthen SNGRD institutions and entities in water supply activities, prevention and response to fires. National government prepares mitigation measures. (o.s.: UNGRD, Plan de Contingencia Nacional;  m.: El Espectador, El Heraldo, Caracol).
Sucre department. Tolú municipality. Oil spill in the ocean threatens the beaches of the municipality. No damage to communities at this moment. National response and from the Central Pipeline Company to control the spill. (o.s.: UNGRD, m.: RCN).



6.9 Earthquake in Mexico / Guatemala

A strong 6.9 magnitude earthquake at 37 km depth shook the Mexican border with Guatemala on Monday morning (7/7/2014), causing three deaths and 21 injured, damaging buildings in both countries. The quake was felt across a broad swath of southern Mexico and Guatemala. After the earthquake, monitoring protocols and verification of damage were activated in affected regions in both countries. In Guatemala, Orange Alert Institutional was declared and in Chiapas (Mexico) was activated the State Emergency Committee. The wounded were treated at hospitals without exceeding the attention capacity.

 

Floods in Paraguay Leave Thousands Displaced

Paraguay - junio 2014For the last four months Paraguay has been affected by heavy rains that have produced high tides in at least eight departments, and in the capital, Asuncion, due to the overflowing of the Parana and Paraguay rivers, among others. The floods have been slow-onset; therefore, it has been possible to evacuate populations on time. However, more than 30,000 families (about 160,000 people) have been affected, and many of them have been evacuated to the 91 shelters established, or are staying with relatives or friends.

NEW! PAHO/WHO receives U.N. emergency funds to restore water and sanitation in flooded areas of Paraguay

 

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Boosting National Efforts to Protect Health Services in Disasters

The Fourth Session of the Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction of the Americas (RP14) recognized the importance of having and promoting national initiatives on safe hospitals and the need to protect essential services, particularly those dedicated to providing health care and education. The RP14 was held in Guayaquil, Ecuador, from 27 - 29 May. Parallel to the Platform, PAHO’s Department of Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief hosted a meeting for Health Disaster Coordinators. In addition, prior to these activities, a Course on Rapid Response, aimed at strengthening PAHO’s Regional Response Team, was held on the 26th.

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Drinking Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Sector - Guide for the Coordination of Public Health Emergencies and Disasters

The purpose of this guide is to share information, knowledge and tools to strengthen coordination mechanisms in the water, sanitation and health sector, both at national and local level. It is structured in three modules: the first focuses on knowledge of the Humanitarian Reform and the establishment of sectoral groups to respond to public health emergencies and disaster situations. The second presents information regarding the operational activities in the water, sanitation and hygiene sectors and its links with other sectors. Finally, the third discloses the tools necessary to work on preparedness and response for an efficient coordination in the water, sanitation and hygiene sector.

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Quick Guide for Water Health Surveillance - Actions to Ensure Safe Water for the Population

Water health surveillance is a very effective public health intervention to prevent water-borne diseases. This publication presents actions that can be taken to ensure safe water for the population, through practical and simple tools that generate timely information for decision-making, and thus apply the necessary corrective measures in order to protecting the health of the population, which is the responsibility of the Ministry of Public Health and Social Assistance, the drinking water and sanitation sector governing body.

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