Managua on red alert due to heavy rains
News from Nicaragua | Wednesday, 17 June 2015 |
According to the Presidency, the rains in the first two weeks of June left six people dead and affected 35,350 others around the country.
On 12 June, Guillermo González, the national coordinator of the National System for the Prevention, Mitigation and Response to Disasters (SINAPRED), declared a red alert for Managua, the worst affected area.
In rains labelled by the authorities as ‘historic’, more than 200mm (8 inches) of rain fell in three hours in Managua on 2 June. This represents the average rainfall for the whole of May.
Nationally 7,041 houses have been damaged or partially destroyed while 22 were completely destroyed. Schools, hospitals, drinking water wells, electricity supplies have also been affected and in some cases whole streets were washed away as storm drains overflowed.
Of the 7,070 families affected nationally, 129 have been moved to refuge centres in Chinandega, Managua, Matagalpa, Somoto and the Southern Atlantic Coast Autonomous Region (RAAS) while temporary or permanent housing alternatives are being organised.
The inter-institutional Commission on Rain Damage and Proposals for Solutions met on 12 June to report on the situation and discuss solutions such as building more storm drains, small dams and enlarging bridges. However these are unlikely to help during this May to October rainy season.
According to the Germanwatch 2014 Global Climate Risk Index, Nicaragua ranks fourth on an index of countries suffering the most as a result of climate change related weather extremes.