Tropical Depression Sixteen Situation Report # 1: Impact on Belize

Report
from Caribbean Disaster Emergency Response Agency
Published on 16 Oct 2008
Event:

Heavy rainfall associated with Tropical Depression 16 began affecting the southern areas of Belize from the evening of Wednesday October 15. The system is producing a lot of rainfall and this has resulted in flooding in number of the flood prone in the southern districts.

Prognosis

The system has moved inland over Central Guatemala and Western Nicaragua and is a remnant low which continues to weaken and dissipate. However, as of October 16, 2008 4.45pm(AST) The The National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) in Belize reported that the Moho, Sittee and South Stann Creek and Blue Creek Rivers were rising and that the communities of Machakila and Graham Creek were under flood warning. Flooding along the main tributary of the Belize River was also expected as heavy rains were experienced in the El Peten area in Guatemala.

The Meteorological Ofiice in Belize is predicting that an increase in shower activity may start affecting the country early next week due to an area of low pressure in the region.

The Situation

The National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) in Belize has reported that there is flooding in the Stann Creek and Toledo Districts. Hope Creek Village is severely affected and at the time of reporting (October 16, 2008) seven (7) families from that community were at the ITVET Shelter in Stann Creek.

Flooding was also reported in San Antonio, Douglas and San Roman Villages in Northern Belize.

The Kendal temporary crossing (the bridge was washed away earlier this year following the passage of Tropical Storm Arthur) was under six feet of water. The Belize Defence Force has been deployed to the area and has been facilitating crossing in a military craft.

As a precautionary measure, the Coast Guard, Fisheries and other crafts are strategically prepositioned in villages in the river valleys to provide quick evacuation in the event of flash floods.

In the Orange Walk District in the North, persons from Albion Island and San Antonio have voluntarily evacuated. No shelters have been opened.

National Actions

A National Meeting was held in the morning (Thursday, October 16) to discuss the situation and deploy assistance as required. Support is being provided for

NEMO District Committees in the South and North remain on high alert as the FLOOD WATCH remains in effect. Support has been prepositioned for evacuation in threatened areas.

Regional Actions

The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Response Agency Coordinating Unit (CDERA CU) continues to monitor the situation and will provide updates as required.

The Regional Response Mechanism remains on standby.

Contact Details: The CDERA CU 24hr contact number is 246 425 0386