Colombia: Floods and Landslides - Apr 2015

Past disaster

Disaster description

Flooding, windstorms and landslides affected more than 20,000 people in Colombia in April 2015. The rainy season in the southern and western departments had a particularly strong impact in the Amazonas department near the Peruvian and Brazilian border. In this remote area, where information access is limited, the authorities reported more than 4,000 people affected by flooding along the Amazonas river. The population affected is significant, considering that this is one of the country’s least densely populated areas. The floods also had a major impact on nearby Brazilian Amazonia communities. (OCHA, 30 Apr 2015)

On 18 May, heavy rains caused the overflowing of the river Liborina, triggering a landslide in the municipality of Salgar (Antioquia) in the northern part of the country. Houses and bridges were destroyed, and water and sanitation services were suspended, affecting about 18,000 people. (OCHA, 18 May 2015) By 25 May, the death toll stood at 83, and more than 25 people were still presumed to be missing. Authorities report 782 people affected and 126 homes damaged. Three shelters were opened, hosting 107 people. At least 675 affected people sought refuge in houses of friends and relatives. (OCHA, 25 May 2015)

Starting on 22 May, Arauca Department experienced heavy rains, which caused rivers to overflow. Close to 30,000 people were estimated to be affected. Houses and public spaces such as schools, health clinics and child centers, which were being used as emergency shelter, were also been flooded, leaving the population without secure shelter. (ACT Alliance, 29 May 2015)

Overall, more than 41,000 people in 21 departments were affected by heavy rainfall events concentrated in the east on the Venezuelan border, on the Pacific coast and in the north in May (OCHA, 31 May 2015).

Since end of May 2015 heavy rainfall has several impacted the departments of Arauca, Boyacá and Norte de Santander, leaving more than 5,000 people affected. (OCHA, 2 Jul 2015) The overflow of Rio San Miguel in Putumayo, which started on 22 July, has impacted more than 1.600 families (8.100 people) (OCHA, 5 Aug 2015)

On 18 September, heavy rains occurred in several sectors of the municipality of Sucre, Department of Sincelejo producing flash floods which affected 139 people and damaging 87 houses. (ECHO, 20 Sep 2015)

Early October more floods were registered in Tierralta after heavy rains in the department of Cordoba, leaving 290 families affected. (OCHA, 13 Oct 2015)

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