41 Die As Heavy Rains Batter Northern India

A car stucked in mud waters is pictured after flash floods caused by heavy rains at Thodupuzha in India’s Kerala state on October 16, 2021. Appu S. Narayanan / AFP

 

At least 41 people died and more than a dozen were missing after landslides and flash floods triggered by several days of heavy rain hit northern India, officials said Tuesday.

Officials in the Himalayan state of Uttarakhand said 35 people were killed in fresh landslides on Tuesday after six died in similar incidents a day earlier.

At least 30 of them were killed in seven separate incidents in the worst-affected Nainital region early Tuesday, after cloudbursts — an ultra-intense deluge of rain — triggered a series of landslides and destroyed several structures.

“So far 30 people have been confirmed dead, while many people are still missing,” Nainital senior civil officer Ashok Kumar Joshi told AFP.

Joshi said several remote areas in the hilly region witnessed widespread damage in the intense rainfall.

Five of the dead were from a single-family whose house was buried by a massive landslide, another local civil officer Pradeep Jain told AFP.

Another landslide in the northern Almora district killed five people after huge rocks and a wall of mud demolished and engulfed their home.

At least six others were killed on Monday in two remote districts of the state.

The Indian Meteorological Department extended and widened its weather alert on Tuesday, predicting “heavy” to “very heavy” rainfall in the region over the next two days.

The weather office said several areas were drenched by more than 400 millimetres (16 inches) of rainfall on Monday, causing landslides and flooding.

Authorities ordered the closure of schools and banned all religious and tourist activities in the state.

Television footage and social media videos showed residents wading through knee-deep water near Nainital lake, a tourist hotspot, and the Ganges bursting its banks in Rishikesh.

More than 100 tourists were stuck inside a resort in Ramgarh after the overflowing Kosi river deluged several areas.

Landslides are a regular danger in India’s Himalayan north, but experts say they are becoming more common as rains become increasingly erratic and glaciers melt.

Experts also blame construction work on hydroelectric dams and deforestation.

In February, a ferocious flash flood hurtled down a remote valley in Uttarakhand, killing around 200 people. At least 5,700 people perished there in 2013.

Forecasters have also warned of more downpours in the coming days in the southern state of Kerala where floods have already killed at least 27 people since Friday.

Many dams in the state were nearing the danger mark and authorities were evacuating thousands to safer locations as major rivers overflowed.

India’s weather office said heavy rains will again lash the state in the next two days after a brief reprieve on Tuesday.

Landslides, Floods Kill At Least 25 In Southwest India

A car stucked in mud waters is pictured after flash floods caused by heavy rains at Thodupuzha in India’s Kerala state on October 16, 2021. (Photo by Appu S. Narayanan / AFP)

 

At least 25 people have died in landslides and floods triggered by heavy rains in southwestern India, officials said Sunday, as rescuers scoured for survivors in muddy debris and the military flew in emergency supplies.

Residents were cut off in parts of the coastal state of Kerala as the rains, which started to intensify from late Friday, swelled rivers and flooded roads.

Some 11 bodies have been found so far in Idukki district and another 14 in Kottayam district, officials told AFP, after the areas were hit by landslides and flash floods.

Thousands of people have been evacuated and at least 100 relief camps have been set up, Kerala’s Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said Sunday.

The army, navy and airforce are assisting with flood relief and rescue operations. Officials could not say how many people were missing.

“It was my livelihood. Everything is gone,” a distraught man told Kerala news channel Manorama TV in Koottickal town in Kottayam, which was hit by a landslide.

 

Rescue workers carry a body of a victim at a site of a landslide claimed to be caused by heavy rains in Kokkayar in India’s Kerala state on October 17, 2021. (Photo by – / AFP)

 

“The hill broke off near us. There has been a lot of damage and loss. The house has gone. Children have gone,” a woman from Koottickal added.

Video shared on social media showed buses and cars submerged in floodwaters.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted his condolences and said authorities were working to help those who were affected or hit by the deluge.

READ ALSO: Volcanic Ash Halts Flights On Spanish Island

The India Meteorological Department said the heavy rains, caused by a low pressure area over the southeastern Arabian Sea and Kerala, were expected to ease on Monday.

In northern India, some states including the Himalayan regions of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh are forecast to experience “heavy to very heavy rainfall” in the next two to three days, the weather bureau said.

The northern weather system would be caused by a low pressure area over Afghanistan and its surroundings interacting with strong winds from the Bay of Bengal, it added.

In 2018, nearly 500 people were killed in Kerala when it was ravaged by the worst floods to hit the state in almost a century.

15 Dead After Heavy Rain, Floods In China Coal Region

A man makes his way along a flooded area after heavy rainfall in Jiexiu in the city of Jinzhong in China’s northern Shanxi province on October 11, 2021. (Photo by – / AFP) / China OUT

 

At least 15 people have died during unseasonably heavy rain and flooding in north China’s Shanxi province earlier this month, local officials said Tuesday, after the normally dry region received three months’ rain in one week.

The flooding hit the coal-rich landlocked region during a nationwide energy crunch, and after record floods killed more than 300 people in central Henan province in July.

At least 60 coal mines in the province — one of China’s top coal-producing regions — had temporarily closed due to the floods, but now all but four have returned to normal operation, local emergency management official Wang Qirui said at a press conference.

Wang said around 19,000 buildings were destroyed by the extreme weather, with 18,000 others “seriously damaged”.

“Fifteen people died due to the disaster, and three people remain missing,” he added.

At least 1.75 million residents across the province have been affected by the floods, with 120,000 safely evacuated, according to Wang.

READ ALSO: G20 Leaders To Discuss Afghanistan In Virtual Summit

Photos published Tuesday by local state newspaper Shanxi Evening News showed traffic police carrying schoolchildren on their backs while wading through waist-deep water after multiple vehicles got trapped.

Shanxi received more than three times the average monthly rainfall for October in just five days last week, with the provincial government saying precipitation had broken records in multiple localities.

Several regions across China have been hit by unprecedented flooding this year.

Thousands were evacuated in the Hubei and Sichuan provinces this summer because of torrential rain.

And more than 300 people were killed in central China’s Henan province last month after record downpours — a year’s worth of rain in three days.

Experts say freak weather events such as heavy floods and punishing droughts are becoming increasingly common because of climate change.

AFP

Over 600,000 Affected By Heavy Flooding In South Sudan, Says UN

In this file photo taken on September 23, 2019, the United Nations flag is seen during the Climate Action Summit 2019 at the United Nations General Assembly Hall. The UN voiced alarm July 19, 2021, at reports that several governments used Israeli phone malware to spy on activists, journalists and others, stressing the urgent need for better regulation of surveillance technology.
Ludovic MARIN / AFP

 

Severe flooding since August has affected at least 623,000 people in South Sudan, forcing many to flee their homes with the situation further exacerbated by ongoing violence, the UN’s emergency-response agency said Thursday.

Torrential rains have caused rivers to overflow, deluging homes and farms in eight of South Sudan’s ten states, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a briefing note.

Emergency workers are using canoes and boats to reach cut-off populations, with over two-thirds of the affected areas now facing the risk of hunger as food prices shoot up, recording a 15-percent jump since August, the agency said.

“Schools, homes, health facilities and water sources were inundated, impacting people’s access to basic services.”

Some families have been able to flee to the capital Juba, while others have set up makeshift camps along highways, grabbing what few possessions they could from the ruins of their flimsy thatched huts.

In some parts of the country, violence between rival communities has forced tens of thousands of people to leave their homes while also complicating emergency workers’ efforts to help flood-battered communities.

UN teams have struggled to get aid to Warrap, a northwestern state plagued by ethnic violence, which is now battling a measles outbreak.

Meanwhile, around 80,000 people have been uprooted from their homes in Western Equatoria state in the country’s southwest as a result of the fighting which erupted in June, OCHA said, with some fleeing to the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The agency last month warned of limited supplies and a funding shortfall, saying that it had only received 54 percent of the $1.7 billion (1.4 billion euros) required to pay for programmes in the country.

Funding shortages have also forced the UN World Food Programme to suspend food aid to over 100,000 displaced people in South Sudan, the agency said last month, warning of further reductions unless it received more cash.

Four out of five of South Sudan’s 11 million people live in “absolute poverty”, according to the World Bank in 2018, while more than 60 percent of its population suffers from severe hunger from the combined effects of conflict, drought and floods.

Since achieving independence from Sudan in 2011, the young nation has been in the throes of a chronic economic and political crisis, and is struggling to recover from the aftermath of a five-year civil war that left nearly 400,000 people dead.

Although a 2018 ceasefire and power-sharing deal between President Salva Kiir and his deputy Riek Machar still largely holds, it is being sorely tested, with little progress made in fulfilling the terms of the peace process.

AFP

Bangkok On Alert As Flood Hits 70,000 Homes In Thailand

A man wades through floodwaters in front of a Buddhist temple in the central Thai province of Ayutthaya on September 28, 2021, as tropical storm Dianmu caused flooding in 30 provinces across the country. (Photo by Lillian SUWANRUMPHA / AFP)

 

Thai authorities on Tuesday rushed to protect parts of Bangkok from floodwaters that have already inundated 70,000 homes and killed six people in the country’s northern and central provinces.

Tropical storm Dianmu has caused flooding in 30 provinces, with the kingdom’s central region the worst hit, the Thai Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department said.

The level of the Chao Phraya River — which snakes through Bangkok after winding almost 400 kilometres from the north — is steadily rising as authorities release water from dams further upstream.

Soldiers on Tuesday set up barriers and sandbags to protect ancient archaeological ruins and landmarks as well as neighbourhoods in the old royal capital Ayutthaya, some 60 km (40 miles) north of Bangkok.

“Most of the banana trees that I planted have been submerged. It’s all gone,” Ayutthaya flood victim Somporn, 52, told AFP.

There are hopes Bangkok can avoid a repeat of the catastrophic 2011 monsoon season when it experienced its worst flooding in decades — a fifth of the city was underwater and more than 500 people died.

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration says it is closely monitoring the Chao Phraya’s water level and has water pumps and sandbags ready.

“We will give people a warning if there is a sign the water level is rising and if there is a risk of flash floods,” Bangkok governor Aswin Kwanmuang said on Tuesday.

Bangkok officials have begun piling sandbags outside banks and other businesses near a canal in Thonglor — a shopping district and residential area popular with expats.

Once dubbed the “Venice of the East”, the capital is built on former marshland and rests about 1.5 metres (five feet) above sea level.

In the past, farmland and rice paddies in low-lying areas absorbed flood water, but the city’s expansion has seen much converted into real estate.

The city’s flood prevention masterplan, involving underground reservoirs and tunnels, has not been fully built because of problems acquiring land, local media reported.

Over the weekend, emergency teams staged dramatic rescues evacuating villagers from rooftops in parts of Chaiyaphum province, about four hours northeast of the capital.

A TikTok user filmed a dramatic dog rescue in Lopburi province, as onlookers lowered a shirtless man into the raging torrent to fish out a paddling black pooch on Monday afternoon.

AFP

Djokovic Continues Slam Hunt As New York Recovers From Flash flooding

Serbia’s Novak Djokovic prepares to throw tennis balls to fans after winning his 2021 US Open Tennis tournament men’s singles first round match against Denmark’s Holger Rune during their at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York, on August 31, 2021. (Photo by ANGELA WEISS / AFP)

 

Australia’s top-ranked Ashleigh Barty rolled into the third round of the US Open on Thursday while New York struggled to recover from a deadly storm and flash flooding.

Remnants of Hurricane Ida killed at least eight people and triggered a rare state of emergency for the city, flooding subways and turning roads into rivers.

With abandoned cars scattered across streets near the National Tennis Center and many highways shut down, only a smattering of spectators watched in a cavernous Arthur Ashe Stadium as Barty dispatched Danish 18-year-old Clara Tauson 6-1, 7-5.

Barty send a backhand long to surrender a break in the 10th game of the second set while serving for the match but held her nerve, broke back and held again to win in 90 minutes.

“I’ve always been quite a calm person,” Barty said. “That’s certainly part of my game.”

Barty, who next plays American Shelby Rogers or Romania’s Sorana Cirstea, seeks her third career Grand Slam title, her second in a row after Wimbledon, and her sixth trophy of the year as well as her first US Open quarter-finals appearance.

World number one Novak Djokovic was set to continue his quest for the calendar-year Grand Slam in the night feature on Ashe against Dutchman Tallon Griekspoor.

Djokovic is eyeing the first men’s singles calendar Slam since Rod Laver in 1969 if he captures a fourth career US Open crown.

The 34-year-old Serbian is also six wins away from his 21st career Grand Slam crown, which would give him the men’s all-time record, one more than the mark he now shares with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, both absent with injuries.

Swiss 11th seed Belinda Bencic, the Tokyo Olympic champion, beat Italy’s Martina Trevisan 6-3, 6-1 in windy conditions.

“That was a little bit tricky but after yesterday’s bad weather I’m not complaining,” Bencic said. “Thanks to everyone for coming. I know it was not easy.”

Above the US Open grounds, there were sunny blue cloudless skies. Outdoor furniture scattered by high winds had been restored or replaced. High water that flooded plazas the night before had drained away.

Wind-blown rain went under and through the closed roof at Louis Armstrong Stadium, forcing a match to be finished at Ashe, but the swamped venue had players practicing Thursday morning.

“Thank you for your patience with last night’s events and we hope that you are safe,” the tournament tweeted.

“The safety of our fans, players and staff is of the utmost importance,” said a statement from the US Tennis Association, which delayed outer court starts by an hour to allow extra time for cleanup.

– Pizza stop for Sloane –

Sloane Stephens, the 2017 US Open winner, tweeted a warning on Wednesday night as she departed, saying, “This weather is scary. Please be careful.”

Later she shared a photo of a huge pizza, tweeting, “We’ve been stuck in flooding and stand-still traffic for more then 2 hours so we decided to stop and make the most of it.”

Massive traffic jams in the region, emergency conditions and calls by authorities for people to stay at home appeared set to limit attendance on the fourth day of the year’s final Grand Slam.

Germany’s fourth-seeded Alexander Zverev, the Tokyo Olympic champion and last year’s US Open runner-up, has the second match on Ashe against 33rd-ranked Spanish left-hander Albert Ramos-Vinolas.

Czech fourth seed Karolina Pliskova faces American Amanda Anisimova after Djokovic is finished.

Japan’s Kei Nishikori, the 2014 US Open runner-up, faces Mackenzie McDonald, seeking revenge for a Washington semi-final loss to the American last month. The winner books a potential third-round matchup against Djokovic.

Either American Maxime Cressy or German Oscar Otte could become the fifth qualifier into the men’s third round. There haven’t been so many so deep at any Slam since six at the 2011 French Open and not at the US Open since five made it in 1984.

Otte, ranked 144th, plays 92nd-ranked American Denis Kudla while Cressy, ranked 151st, meets 39th-ranked Nikoloz Basilashvili of Georgia.

AFP

UPDATED: Death Toll In New York Storm Rises To At Least 13: Officials

A man walks through a flooded Major Deegan Expressway in the Bronx as dozens of cars and trucks sit abandoned following as night of heavy wind and rain from the remnants of Hurricane Ida on September 02, 2021 in New York City. Spencer Platt/Getty Images/AFP

 

At least 25 people in the New York region have died from flash flooding caused by rainfall brought by the remnants of Hurricane Ida, officials said Thursday.

Twelve people have now lost their lives in New York City, including 11 who were trapped in the basements of their home, the NYPD said.

Ten were known to have died in New Jersey, according to officials there and another three succumbed to heavy flooding near Philadelphia in Pennsylvania.

AFP

Cameroon’s Main Port City Battles Mounting Flood Peril

François Bakakeu walks in in the courtyard of his house in the Makèpè-Missoké district, that was heavily affected by floods, in Douala, Cameroon, on July 20, 2021. (Photo by Adrien MAROTTE / AFP)

 

 

It is the middle of the night in Cameroon’s largest port city, Douala, and the floodwaters are rising fast and quietly.

Alerted by frightened neighbours, Hummel Tsafack hastily sends his children to safety and grabs a few possessions. A few minutes later, brackish water pours into the family home.

Flooding is an annual hazard during the July-September rainy season in Makepe-Missoke, a poor district in the heart of this city of more than three million people.

But, impelled by suspected climate change and worsened by urban planning and blocked drains, such events have become more and more frequent.

“The TV burned out, the refrigerator burned out,” Tsafack, 35, sighed after the most recent flood earlier this month. “Everything has been trashed.”

“As soon as we hear thunder, we raise the beds,” his neighbour Francois, a man in his fifties, said. “Everyone here is scared. The water rises so fast.”

The two men have stark memories of a flood in  summer 2020 that devastated the neighbourhood and paralysed Cameroon’s economic capital on the Atlantic coast.

Francois’s small home is steeped in damp and none of his household appliances work. The concrete floor has holes in numerous places.

“We have already patched that area seven times. Every time there’s a flood, it breaks up and we have to start again,” he said.

 

A family sits at their home that was heavily affected by floods in the Makèpè-Missoké neighbourhood in Douala, Cameroon, on July 20, 2021. (Photo by Adrien MAROTTE / AFP)

 

– Population growth –
“We moved here because it was cheaper. We aren’t going to move again,” Francois said, though the endangered neighbourhood is located in a flood zone where building is officially banned. People continue to settle there, driven by the lack of space in a city with a population growth rate of more than 5.5 percent per year.

The gap is widening between demand and supply for available land as nearly 110,000 newcomers per year look to put down roots in Douala.

Even before climate change, Doula was already prone to rising water.

The region has almost 250 kilometres (155 miles) of inland waterways and abundant tropical rainfall which averages around 4,000 millimetres (157 inches) per year.

The city lies at the mouth of the Wouri River, on a low coastal plateau, and is influenced by the tides of the Atlantic Ocean.

Meteorological data for the past 20 years record a decrease in precipitation, but the overall decline masks an increase in extreme weather events such intense rainfall.

The latest report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says that coastal cities are on the front line of the climate crisis, threatened by rising sea levels and storm surges.

Floods will displace millions of Africans in the coming decades, and by 2050 inflict costs of up to $60 billion (51 billion euros) per year in the 136 largest coastal cities, it predicts.

– Plastic waste –
But part of the impact from flooding also comes from environmental management.

The banks of the river in Makepe-Missoke are littered with plastic waste.

“Look at all the rubbish that the people here have thrown away,” said environment specialist Didier Yimkwa.

“Add to this the silt and the spread of invasive plants which build up the river bed. When there’s heavy rain, the water overflows,” he said.

To tackle the problem, the city has built around 40 kilometres (25 miles) of drains since 2012 and improved basic services in some neighbourhoods, such as waste collection.

But trash is strewn everywhere in poor districts of Douala and the drains are often clogged with plastic, preventing them from doing their job.

“Thirty percent of waste is estimated to end up in the wild,” Joseph Magloire Olinga, Douala’s deputy director of research and environmental protection, told AFP.

“We need a serious change in land use when it comes to providing homes for people,” Olinga said.

“This means having a denser city centre and building high-rise dwellings — but in some areas, property developers have bought up the land and don’t want to sell it.”

The authorities are still allocating flood-prone areas to construction projects.

“In neighbourhoods like Makepe-Missoke, the goal is to strengthen resilience — to live with the risk of flooding while also minimising it,” Olinga said.

“But what’s sure is that it will also be necessary to get some inhabitants to move because of the threat.”

Senegal’s Capital Floods Again As Experts Blame Poor Planning

Horses pull carts with passengers through flooded streets after heavy rain in Dakar on August 22, 2021. (Photo by SEYLLOU / AFP)

 

 

Senegal’s Interior Minister Antoine Felix Abdoulaye Diome is up to his knees in water, in a suburb of the West African country’s capital, surveying flood damage.

He’s inspecting a home in the eastern Keur Massar district: The first floor and courtyard have been submerged in brown water for three days.

Dragonflies hover over the swampy courtyard, which a lone pump is struggling to drain. Inside, furniture has been raised off the ground.

The owner of the home, who declined to be named, is scathing.

“They are incapable,” he tells AFP, gesturing towards the minister and his entourage.

Anger has been growing over the increasingly routine flooding in Dakar.

Diome and other officials were booed as they toured Keur Massar, and protesters elsewhere in Dakar blocked a highway.

Comprising about 3.7 million people, the city regularly floods during the July-October rainy reason. But the problem is getting worse. This year, heavy flooding struck after only two days of rain.

The floods have also come after repeated government promises to solve the problem.

Moise David Ndour, another Keur Massar resident, is also fed up. “Nothing has been done,” he says. “Some people have even moved away because of this”.

Many are expecting worse flooding to come as the rains continue.

According to experts interviewed by AFP, whole districts are built on flood plains, and on soft soils close to the water table. Planning is haphazard and local authorities appear to exert little control.

 

Antoine Felix Abdoulaye Diome (C), Senegal’s Minister of the Interior, visits flooded areas after heavy rain in Keur Massar, Dakar on August 22, 2021. (Photo by SEYLLOU / AFP)

 

– ‘Worrying paradox –
Senegalese President Macky Sall launched a 10-year plan to combat flooding when he came to power in 2012, with a budget the equivalent of about 1.14 billion euros ($1.4 billion).

Water pumps and culverts have been installed in some areas of Dakar, successfully warding off flooding. However, other districts of the rapidly expanding city have been left untouched.

About a quarter of Senegal’s population of 16 million people live in the seaside city, where there is fierce pressure to build because of housing shortages.

The government has sought to relieve inundated areas without tackling the reasons underlying regular flooding, according to Senegalese geologist Pape Goumbo Lo.

“The construction of housing must take into account the nature of the soil,” he said, adding that there is a need for more studies of the land and the water table.

Free-for-all construction has also exacerbated flooding even as downpours have become less frequent.

“This is a very worrying paradox,” says Cheikh Gueye, a geographer and researcher at the Dakar-based NGO Enda Tiers-Monde.

“Less and less rain is causing more and more damage,” he adds.

 

Firefighters in charge of disaster relief pump water in a flooded street after heavy rain in Keur Massar, Dakar on August 22, 2021. (Photo by SEYLLOU / AFP)

 

– Horses to the rescue –
In Mbao, another Dakar suburb, it hasn’t rained in three days, but the main road is still flooded with stagnant water.

Motorbikes, scooters and public transportation vehicles can no longer use it.

Ibrahim Cisse, a local with water lapping round his ankles, says “we have no choice but to get wet or use the horse-drawn carriages to cross the street”.

In front of him, about a dozen people are perched on a horse-cart, which are common in Senegal but are mostly used to transport goods.

 

 

A man walk through a flooded street after heavy rain in Keur Massar, Dakar on August 22, 2021. (Photo by SEYLLOU / AFP)

“There is a lot of damage, the shopkeepers can’t open,” says another local, who declines to be named. “We have to get past this”.

But Cheikh Gueye, the geographer, is pessimistic.

“We build in flood zones: Every day new neighbourhoods are created, and the same mistakes are made”.

UPDATED: Over 450 Households Affected, Seven Killed As Flood Ravages Yobe Communities

A combination of screenshots of the communities ravaged by flood in Yobe State.

 

No fewer than 450 households were affected by a recent flood that ravaged several communities in Yobe State, authorities have said.

The flooding was triggered by a downpour that lasted several hours on Sunday.

At least seven persons died from the incident.

Among those who suffered heavy losses was Falmata Ali, whose two children drowned while sleeping.

The sobbing mother called on the relevant authorities to provide a permanent solution to the flood that has become an annual episode in the state.

A screenshot taken on August 20, 2021, shows one of the communities ravaged by flood in Yobe State.

 

Some of the communities worst hit by the flood are Tandari, Yindiski, Dadin Kowa, Gadan Talaka, Maisandari, Usmanti, Gaurawa, Kasaisa, Abari, and Nayinawa.

All persons killed by the flood were residents of Potiskum Local Government Area (LGA) where at least 250 households were affected.

While about 249 households were also affected in Nguru LGA, authorities have yet to ascertain the number of those affected in communities in Damaturu, the state capital.

According to the Commissioner for Humanitarian Affairs in Yobe, Garba Iliya, the state government has directed the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) to assess and respond to the plight of the victims.

 

An Annual Crisis

The Executive Secretary of Yobe SEMA, Mohammed Goje, explained that the emergency agency had already dispatched a search and rescue team to the affected communities to assess the level of damages caused by the flood.

A screenshot taken on August 20, 2021, shows a woman carrying a load in one of the communities ravaged by flood in Yobe State.

 

Goje added that the team has been working hard to ensure those affected were properly taken care of while several affected households have been provided food and temporary shelter.

He also confirmed the number of households affected in the various communities.

Just like Faltama, residents of the communities have appealed to the government to provide a lasting solution to the issue of flooding in the state.

Some of them told reporters in Damaturu that the issue of perennial flood has become an annual crisis as they asked the government to proffer short and long-term measures to address the crisis.

A screenshot taken on August 20, 2021, shows residents leaving one of the communities ravaged by flood in Yobe State.

 

“It rained heavily on Sunday,” said Adamu Ibrahim who spoke in Hausa. “It started around 12 midnight to 3am, and suddenly in the morning, the flood came from the South.

“About 150 households were affected in this area. We want the government to evacuate the water channel because we are approaching the peak of the (rainy) season.”

Meanwhile, the North East Development Commission (NEDC) has distributed food and non-food items to the victims.

The NEDC Acting Coordinator in Yobe, Garba Ajiyabo, revealed that the commission was targeting 3,516 victims for a start.

As the rainy season nears its peak, the residents are hopeful that the government will take proactive measures to prevent a reoccurrence.

Earthquake, Storm And Floods Add To Haiti’s Misery

A bulldozer clears the rubble of a building that collapsed in the earthquake in Brefet, a neighborhood of Les Cayes, Haiti, on August 17, 2021. 
Reginald LOUISSAINT JR / AFP

 

 

The death toll from a 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck Haiti has risen to 1,941, the Caribbean nation’s civil protection agency said Tuesday, as a tropical storm brought torrential downpours on survivors already coping with catastrophe.

More than 9,900 people were wounded when the quake struck the southwestern part of the Caribbean nation on Saturday, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) to the west of the capital Port-au-Prince, according to the updated toll.

With more than 60,000 homes destroyed and 76,000 damaged, the United Nations’ children’s agency UNICEF said that more than half a million children have been affected by the disaster.

In the coastal town of Les Cayes, residents began building makeshift shelters on a football field despite lashing winds and pouring rain as Tropical Storm Grace passed over the country.

So few structures remained standing that people had to relieve themselves in city streets, according to Magalie Cadet, 41, who only had a shower cap to protect against the rain.

Aftershocks continued to rock the ground in Les Cayes days after the quake, further terrifying the residents.

“Yesterday evening, I took shelter near a church, but when I heard the ground shake again, I ran to return here,” said Cadet.

The government has declared a month-long state of emergency in the four provinces affected by the quake.

Rescue workers have pulled out 34 people alive from the rubble in the past 48 hours, authorities said.

The United States, which has evacuated about 40 people for emergency treatment, has chartered eight military helicopters from Honduras to continue medical evacuation efforts.

The USS Arlington, a US Navy transport ship, is also due to arrive in Haiti on Wednesday with a surgical team on board, the Pentagon’s Southern Command said. Field operating theaters are also being set up at some hospitals in the earthquake zone.

Rather be ‘wet than dead’

 

People gather after spending the night outside in the aftermath of the earthquake, facing the severe inclement weather of Tropical Storm Grace near Les Cayes, Haiti on August 17, 2021. 
Reginald LOUISSAINT JR / AFP

 

The US National Hurricane Center warned of flash and urban flooding, and possible mudslides as Grace lashed the impoverished country with up to 15 inches (38 centimeters) of rain.

Haiti officials warned residents to watch out for buildings that are showing cracks from the earthquake because they could collapse under the weight of water.

Despite the rain, drinking water was running short. In the coastal community of Pestel, over 1,800 cisterns with drinking water have cracked or been destroyed in the quake.

In 2010, in the aftermath of a horrific earthquake that killed 200,000 people, Haiti saw a deadly cholera outbreak caused by sewage from a United Nations base.

Natacha Lormira tried to build a shelter for herself using a torn piece of tarp attached to a thin piece of wood.

“I don’t want to hide under a gallery or under a corner of a wall because we have seen people die under wall panels,” said Lormira. “We have resigned ourselves that it’s easier to be wet than dead.”

Government ‘not helping’

 

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – AUGUST 16: A woman raises her hands in prayer during a faith vigil for victims of an earthquake in Haiti at the steps of St. Jerome’s Roman Catholic Church on August 16, 2021 in the Little Caribbean neighborhood of Brooklyn borough in New York City.  Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images/AFP
Michael M. Santiago / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

 

Wet from the constant rain, 28-year-old Vladimir Gilles tried to insert several pieces of bamboo deep into the ground to build a cover for his wife and child.

Gilles said he needs some tarp to keep his family dry, but the government “is not helping.”

“My house is destroyed, I have nowhere to sleep,” he said.

On the grounds of the Ofatma hospital in Les Cayes, American soldiers unloaded boxes of equipment before welcoming a severely injured man on a stretcher and a wounded child carried in the arms of a worker from the HERO medical evacuation organization.

“This little boy has a cerebral hemorrhage … If we can help him, he can have a normal childhood, so it makes a difference,” said Carolyn Davies, a nurse from the NGO Canadian Medical Assistance, who arrived in Les Cayes the day after the disaster.

The international support is a relief for the medical team at the hospital in Les Cayes.

But any official rescue efforts in one of the world’s poorest countries are complicated by political chaos raging there a month after the assassination of president Jovenel Moise.

-AFP

Five Killed, Two Missing In Yobe Flood

Yobe is situated in North-East Nigeria
A map of Yobe, a state in northeast Nigeria.

 

 

Five persons have been killed while two others missing as a result of a heavy downpour that occurred on Sunday in Potiskum, the Yobe State capital.

The affected areas according to a resident of the area, Adamu Yunusa include Tandari, Yindiski, Dadin Kowa, Gadan Talaka, and Jigawa wards.

Confirming the incident, The Executive Secretary of the Yobe State Emergency Management Agency, Mohammed Goje says a search and rescue team has been dispatched to the area to assess the level of the damages.

A resident, Falmata Ali, whose two children were killed in the incident while sleeping, called on the relevant authorities to provide a permanent solution to the flood that has become an annual episode.