UN OCHA Flash Update 7, Cyclone Mahasen, Bangladesh and Myanmar

Report
from UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Published on 17 May 2013

After making landfall in Bangladesh and moving forward to the northeast away from Myanmar, Tropical Cyclone Mahasen weakened and dissipated on 17 May. Relevant storm tracking sites stopped tracking the weather system once it moved over northern Bangladesh early on 17 May.

As of midday today, the Government of Bangladesh had reported six deaths, and a limited number of people in flood affected districts were injured. While assessments are ongoing, in light of the potential damage anticipated over the last five days, reported damage to houses has been limited.

Humanitarian agencies have undertaken an aerial assessment across the affected districts as an initial step to better understand the situation. The assessment indicates that there is no significant damage; however there are localised pockets of flooding which may see limited needs for provision of drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, and temporary shelter to people who have been affected.

The Government did not declare a disaster, and no request for international assistance was issued. The Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief has confirmed that the Government will conduct a review of the situation post tropical storm Mahasen.

Myanmar's Rakhine State was spared any significant impact from the storm and initial assessments indicate no damage. The Government of Myanmar report that almost 120,000 people moved or were relocated to safer and higher places.

UN agencies and partners continue to monitor the various movements of people to and from locations so as to safeguard individuals and provide protection for all those still faced with beingdisplaced as the rainy season continues.

In Sittwe, OCHA and partners have organised teams, comprised of experts in water, sanitation and hygiene, food security and health from various humanitarian organisations, to ensure the situation and conditions in both the original camps and relocation sites are safe, and that adequate provisions exist for people who have had to move in the last few days. No teams identified major protection issues and early reports indicate that the majority of communities are returning to their previous camps or host communities.

Humanitarian agencies will undertake a review of actions taken in the last week. The exercise will enable them to develop a clearer understanding of the adequacy of pre-identified relocation sites and what can be done to improve these facilities for their future use; bearing in mind that this is the start of the rainy season and thus there is potential that these sites may need to be used again.

This is the last OCHA Flash update for Cyclone Mahasen to be issued by the OCHA Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific.

For further details please contact:
Kirsten Mildren | Regional Communications Officer
Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs | Regional Office Asia Pacific
Tel: +66 2288 2856 | Mob: +66 81 915 1276 | Email: mildren@un.org
For more information, please visit www.unocha.org/roap or @OCHAAsiaPac

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs:

To learn more about OCHA's activities, please visit http://unocha.org/.