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.

Colombia 7/24/2014

Drought. La Guajira Department. Eight of the 15 municipalities have been declared in state of calamity. Response: National government will determine mitigation measures to address drought and El Niño phenomenon. Declaration of public calamity and sanitary emergency is being considered. Departmental governments of Atlántico and César prepare response plans. 117 municipalities at risk in Colombia, according to National Water Study. Nearly 80% probability that the phenomenon will happen during the final trimester. (o.s.: Defensoría del Pueblo, IDEAM: Predicción climática Julio e Informe condiciones actuales y predicción climática; m.:  Caracol, RCN).
Cauca department. Timbiquí municipality. Landslides in open air mine cause seven deaths and two injuries. (m.: El Espectador).
Nariño Department. Pasto municipality. Floods leave 205 families isolated in El Encano zone, another 80 families at risk. Declaration of public calamity by local authorities. (m.: Caracol).

Mexico 7/24/2014

State of Guerrero. Tecpan, Zihuatanejo, and Petatlán municipalities. Heavy rains damage 800 homes in 42 communities and 40 districts. State government response, requesting declaration of emergency. Forecast for heavy rains in the west of the country and intense rains in Veracruz. (o.s.: SMN, Gobierno de Guerrero; m.: Milenio).

Peru 7/24/2014

Loreto department. Oil spill update. 450 people affected, water consumption restrictions in some locations. Response: mobilization of health teams, health personnel remain in the zone, chlorine solution is being distributed and water analysis is being conducted. Local communities request declaration of environmental and sanitary emergency. (o.s.: INDECI; m.: La República)

Colombia 7/24/2014

Drought. La Guajira Department. Eight of the 15 municipalities have been declared in state of calamity. Response: National government will determine mitigation measures to address drought and El Niño phenomenon. Declaration of public calamity and sanitary emergency is being considered. Departmental governments of Atlántico and César prepare response plans. 117 municipalities at risk in Colombia, according to National Water Study. Nearly 80% probability that the phenomenon will happen during the final trimester. (o.s.: Defensoría del Pueblo, IDEAM: Predicción climática Julio e Informe condiciones actuales y predicción climática; m.:  Caracol, RCN).
Cauca department. Timbiquí municipality. Landslides in open air mine cause seven deaths and two injuries. (m.: El Espectador).
Nariño Department. Pasto municipality. Floods leave 205 families isolated in El Encano zone, another 80 families at risk. Declaration of public calamity by local authorities. (m.: Caracol).



Health effects associated with volcanic eruptions in Chile and Argentina

Puyehue Volcano in Chile, which last erupted in June causing the evacuation of 4,000 people, is once again showing signs of activity. Back in June, the National Emergency Office (ONEMI) maintained a Red Alert in communities from Los Lagos and Los Rios Regions. The city of Bariloche, in Argentina, was declared in a state of economic and social disaster as a result of the devastating effects of the volcano. Major roads, as well as crop areas, were covered by thick layer of ashes.

In this situation, the health sector response has been swift. Health facilities assist the population during extended hours and the national authorities have already sent to the area 310,000 masks, eye drops, chlorine tablets and water purification equipment. Health recommendations in these cases are aimed to ensure quality control of air and drinking water, to prevent diseases caused by volcanic ash and to maintain sanitary conditions in shelters and waste disposal, among others.

Most active volcanoes in the world are in Latin America and the Caribbean, and millions of people live in villages and towns located nearby. Throughout history, many of these volcanoes have shown great capacity for destruction. In order to avoid loss of lives and damages, PAHO/WHO continues to provide support to countries to prepare contingency plans in the health sector to deal with such emergencies.

Picture: Volcanic ash from Puyehue´s volcano. © Dr. Sergio Mora

 

Situation Report 1 Volcano Chile/Argentina June 9, 2011

 

                             Epidemiological surveillance diagram

                

For more information on volcanic eruptions, see the following PAHO/WHO material (in Spanish):

    Guía de Preparativos de Salud Frente a Erupciones Volcánicas.

    Los volcanes y la protección de la salud.

    Video - Los volcanes y la protección de la salud.

    Aprendiendo a vivir con el volcán, protegemos nuestra salud.

    Damage Assessment and Needs Analysis in the Health Sector during Disasters

    ¿Quién es usted señor volcán? 

 

Material from other organizations:

   The health hazards of volcanic ash (IVHHN and others)

   Guidelines on preparedness before, during and after an ashfall (IVHHN and others)

   Protocol for analysis of bulk ash samples (IVHHN and Durham University)

 

Scientific Articles:

   Respiratory health hazards of volcanic ash

   Cristobalite in a rhyolitic lava dome

    

We also recommend these links:

    International Volcano Health Hazard Network (IVHHN)
    Colombian Institute for Geology and Mines (SERNAGEOMIN)
   Basic recommendations for volcanic eruptions (ONEMI-Chile) - in Spanish

 

 

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