Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief

Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief


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Monitoring Emergencies



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

Guatemala 7/30/2014

Drought damages crops, affecting 40,000 families in eight departments. (m.: Siglo 21, Prensa Libre)
Alta Verapaz Department. Floods and landslides from floods affect 474 people and damage 79 homes in two municipalities. (o.s.: CONRED)

Mexico 7/30/2014

Sonora State. Agua Prieta Municipality. Rise of Cabullona Creek causes eight deaths and four people missing during a sports event. 25 people rescued. State response. Alert for rising rivers .(o.s.: Gobierno de Sonora; m.: Milenio,
Querétaro State. Querétaro Municipality. Fire from gas pipe causes eight injuries and evacuation of 150 people; damage to homes and vehicles. Local and state response. (m.: Milenio)
Earthquake 6.4M update: one person killed in Oaxaca and damage to 73 homes in Oaxaca and Veracruz. Minor damages to San Alejandro Hospital of the IMSS in Puebla and Oaxaca General Hospital, no service disruption. (o.s.: Gobierno de Oaxaca;  m.: La Jornada de Oriente, Milenio, Excelsior).

Venezuela 7/30/2014

State of Zulia. Drought affects six municipalities. Water reserves up to 59 days. State response with national support. Rationing plans and water distribution by tankers. (m.: Agencia Venezolana de Noticias)

Guatemala 7/30/2014

Drought damages crops, affecting 40,000 families in eight departments. (m.: Siglo 21, Prensa Libre)
Alta Verapaz Department. Floods and landslides from floods affect 474 people and damage 79 homes in two municipalities. (o.s.: CONRED)



Nuclear Emergency in Japan

On 11 March 2011, a magnitude 9 earthquake on the Richter scale hit the East Coast of Japan. As part of the contingency plan, all the nuclear reactors in the area shut down and emergency generator power systems were activated. However, the 14-16 meter high tsunami waves that followed the earthquake affected some of the emergency generators at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant, which had three reactors in operation at the time.  Units 1 to 4 were left without any power, preventing the cooling systems for the reactor’s core and for the spent fuel pools to function. The generated heat damaged the fuel rods causing several explosions.

Although some radiological contamination spread into the environment and food and milk restrictions still exist in some of the surrounding villages, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency "no health effects have been reported in any person as a result of radiation exposure from the nuclear accident". The International Maritime Organization affirms "screening of radiation for health and safety purposes is currently considered unnecessary at airports and seaports around the world". Radiation doses to the nuclear plant workers are continuously being monitored. To prevent further dispersion of radioactive substances, the buildings of the affected units will be covered.

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