Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief

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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.

Chile 3/26/2015

Antofagasta, Atacama, and Coquimbo: Flash flooding generated by intense rains related to a cold front that affects the northern area of the country and that causing rivers to breach their banks. Seven reported deaths and the 19 missing, nearly 500 homes affected, 35 destroyed and nearly 2000 people in shelters. Atacama is the region that has been primarily affected. According to authorities (ONEMI), the most critical areas affected in Atacama are located in Chañaral, Copiapó, Alto del Carmen and Tierra Amarilla. Damage assessment is in progress but access and communication difficulty hinders data collection. Several hospitals have reported damages and are only partially functioning. The Ministry of Health evaluates the situation of the assistance network and issues adjustments in the services network and a Sanitary Alert in Atacama and recommendations. A State of Emergency decree has been issued for the current emergency. ENFERMEPEDIA.

Ecuador 3/26/2015

  • De Los Rios Province: Areas of Babahoyo and nearby localities flooded after 8 hours of intense rain.   Areas of the center and the periphery were flooded yesterday. The Prefecture, Social Security, terrestrial terminal among others buildings were affected by the floods. (mc.: eluniverso).
  • Via Aloag-Santo Domingo (Update) Landslide site that killed 5 people is declared a cemetery.  The bodies cannot be rescued as the site is not safe.  A total are 13 fatal victims including two people in the parish Alluriquín. (m.: eluniverso).

Peru 3/26/2015

Landslide, March 24, 19:00hrs local time. Choros District, Cajamarca Department; 34 homes affected, 9 collapsed, 25 unsafe to return and 0.5km of rural road also affected.  (os.: INDECI).

Chile 3/26/2015

Antofagasta, Atacama, and Coquimbo: Flash flooding generated by intense rains related to a cold front that affects the northern area of the country and that causing rivers to breach their banks. Seven reported deaths and the 19 missing, nearly 500 homes affected, 35 destroyed and nearly 2000 people in shelters. Atacama is the region that has been primarily affected. According to authorities (ONEMI), the most critical areas affected in Atacama are located in Chañaral, Copiapó, Alto del Carmen and Tierra Amarilla. Damage assessment is in progress but access and communication difficulty hinders data collection. Several hospitals have reported damages and are only partially functioning. The Ministry of Health evaluates the situation of the assistance network and issues adjustments in the services network and a Sanitary Alert in Atacama and recommendations. A State of Emergency decree has been issued for the current emergency. ENFERMEPEDIA.



Earthquake drill in Costa Rica

Around 50 experts on emergencies and disasters form Central America and Ecuador participated in a drill exercise developed in the framework of the regional workshop on disaster response teams held in San Jose, Costa Rica from 19 to 23 April.

The exercise, which used real scenarios (situation room, emergency operations center, shelters, etc.), allowed the implementation of lessons learned and tools developed during the training process of the project, implemented by the Pan American Health Organization with the financial support of the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID). This initiative aims at strengthening the disaster response capacity in Central America, Dominican Republic and Ecuador.

Costa Rican institutions such as the Ministry of Health, the Social Insurance Fund, the Red Cross, the National Emergency Commission and the Institute of Aqueducts and Sewers (AyA), actively participated in the exercise, provided logistical support and tracked the script development and the evaluation process. 

The participants faced complex situations in different areas such as need assessment in the health sector, information management, logistics, shelters, water and sanitation, etc. The expected outcome of the exercise was to generate an action plan to address the risk factors on public health.

Among the lessons learned, participants noted the importance of teamwork, coordination and efficient management and timely flow of information for an adequate decision-making process and effective response. The evaluation of the exercise was very positive and participants generated questions, concerns and new challenges for the future.

 

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