Heavy rainfall and flash floods cause havoc across Kenya
The country has been experiencing increasingly intense rainfall over the last weeks with significant amounts of rainfall currently being witnessed in the Coastal, North Eastern, Central and parts of Western region.
Current estimates indicate that about 26 people have lost their lives and a further 24,803 people have been displaced in 13 counties across the country following heavy rains and flooding.
“The floods have resulted in huge livestock losses in some areas, displacement of communities and disruption of livelihoods,” said Dr. Abbas Gullet, Secretary General, Kenya Red Cross Society. “The continuing huge livestock losses is exposing communities that had been affected by drought, further hampering their effective recovery,” added Dr. Gullet.
KRCS has been supporting the affected communities through a number of interventions that include: mapping of flood prone areas; issuing early warning messages to communities in areas with relatively high risk of flooding; supporting search and rescue/recovery; rapid assessment in affected areas; distribution of emergency shelter materials to displaced communities; distribution of water treatment chemicals to affected communities and; provision of water, sanitation and hygiene items (chlorine, soap, brooms and cleaning equipment) to avoid disease outbreaks and spread.
“Our response has been to provide the affected families with emergency shelter materials. Our teams on the ground continue to be alert,” added Dr. Gullet.
Forecasts from the Kenya Meteorological Department indicate that rainfall is expected to continue over several parts of the country, with high intensity in western and coastal regions, as well as central highlands, notably areas around Mt. Kenya. The situation is compounded by the fact that the ground is saturated and most of the rain water being received is converted to runoff.