Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief

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

Colombia 7/26-28/2014

Drought. 79 municipalities affected by fires, water shortage and damage to agriculture; of those, 37 have declared public calamity situations. Major damage in La Guajira department, with 10 of 15 municipalities in state of public calamity. Response: Assistance has been prioritized in La Guajira department and Santa Marta municipality (Magdalena). Delivery of food kits, increased water distribution through tank cars and distribution of water containers, construction of wells and installation of desalinization mills. Crisis response activated in La Guajira. (o.s.: UNGRD)
Vichada department. Puerto Carreño municipality. Flooding due to overflow of the Irinoco and Meta Rivers; in addition, gales damage homes. Local response: Declaration of public calamity. (o.s.: Municipio de Puerto Carreño m.: Emisora de Policía de Puerto Carreño, Vanguardia)

United States 7/26-28/2014

Washington state. Forest fire update. 300 homes destroyed and damage to infrastructure. Preventative evacuations continue. State response with national support. Electric service reestablished.(o.s.: INCIWEB).

Guatemala 7/26-28/2014

Izabal, Alta, and Baja Verapaz departments. Floods and landslides from rains affect 720 people and damage 123 homes. Heavy rainfall accumulation in the areas of the Northern Transversal Strip and the Caribbean. (o.s.: CONRED)

Peru 7/26-28/2014

Ancash department. Santa Rosa district. Landslides affect potable water intake systems and roads; no victims and no damage to homes. Local response: Emergency declaration, provisional catchment of spring water. (o.s.: INDECI; m.: Andina).

Colombia 7/26-28/2014

Drought. 79 municipalities affected by fires, water shortage and damage to agriculture; of those, 37 have declared public calamity situations. Major damage in La Guajira department, with 10 of 15 municipalities in state of public calamity. Response: Assistance has been prioritized in La Guajira department and Santa Marta municipality (Magdalena). Delivery of food kits, increased water distribution through tank cars and distribution of water containers, construction of wells and installation of desalinization mills. Crisis response activated in La Guajira. (o.s.: UNGRD)
Vichada department. Puerto Carreño municipality. Flooding due to overflow of the Irinoco and Meta Rivers; in addition, gales damage homes. Local response: Declaration of public calamity. (o.s.: Municipio de Puerto Carreño m.: Emisora de Policía de Puerto Carreño, Vanguardia)



Response by the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Sector to the Floods in Loreto, Peru 2012

Experiences and Lessons Learned for the Future

The heavy rains at the beginning of 2012 in Peru forced the Government to declare a state of National Emergency in 18 regions of the country. One of the most affected areas was the Loreto region, in the country’s northeast. According to SENAMHI (National Service of Meteorology and Hydrology of Peru), historical rainfall amounts were exceeded. The losses in agricultural production and in the private and public infrastructure were very high, but the institutional response initially deployed was not enough to meet the needs of the population.

The population’s vulnerability increased as a result of the collapse of the sanitation systems. In addition, the extending area of dispersion of pathogen agents increased the probability of transmission of diseases from river waters. For this reason it became imperative for the water, sanitation and hygiene sector to give an immediate response in order to control the associated risks and minimize the impact on the population.

This publication, produced by PAHO/WHO, describes the process of implementing the humanitarian response activities, as well as the actions that contributed to the strengthening of local, sectorial, and regional communities, with special emphasis on lessons learned. To that end, primary and secondary sources were analyzed, technical staff from participating agencies was interviewed, and those who benefitted from the interventions were surveyed on the results.

The document includes a brief description of the country, the context and the exceptional levels reached by the floods, the affected areas, the Plan of Action for the response and the development of the activities of this plan and response coordination strategies, good practices and lessons learned from interventions in the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Sector.

This publication is only available in Spanish in PDF format. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to read the file. Download the software for free from the Adobe website.

Download the publication (4Mb)

 

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