Algeria: Cold Wave - Emergency Plan of Action Final Report Operation n° MDRDZ004

Situation Report
Originally published
View original



Description of the disaster

On 11 January 2019, Algeria was hit by a cold wave with heavy snow and rainfalls which further intensified. This natural disaster has resulted in the isolation of many villages and the destruction of homes as well as the vulnerable groups that have become homeless. Following the first cold wave, Algeria experienced successive cold waves which left to the magnitude of the disaster and call for interventions to assist vulnerable groups.

First wave:

From 11 - 13 January 2019, extreme weather conditions resulted in widespread chaos which left eight people dead and 25 people wounded. In addition, powerlines and infrastructure were damaged and more than 151 roads became blocked due to snow and flooding. More than 300 villages across the country lost shelter and livelihoods. In addition to that, most vulnerable (nomadic families) being severely affected. The size of those affected exceeded 25 thousand families, according to the Algerian Government.

Second Wave:

Extreme weather conditions continued with a second cold wave from 24 -26 January 2019, leaving more communities inaccessible, cut off from services and access to food and water. The same areas from the first cold wave has further complicated and intensified the situation for those affected.

Third Wave:

The cold wave hit Algeria for a third time from 6 - 8 February 2019. The same areas were hit, which lead to increase the number of people affected as well as the division of the affected groups changing according to an upward trend.
The cold wave hit one more time from 21 - 22 March 2019, leading to increased needs of the affected people beyond the initial estimate.

Due to the limited response for the Algerian Red Crescent. Especially, the ARC does not have a response team capable of covering the deficit and there are limited capacities. Algerian Red Crescent requested an appeal in response to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

Summary of response

Overview of Host National Society

In response to the cold wave, ARC mobilized 17 out of 48 branches and 1,235 volunteers were involved. The first distribution of emergency food and household items to the communities started on 24 January 2019, based on the rapid assessment results, using items prepositioned in ARC warehouse. The President of the ARC was on the ground visiting affected areas and overseeing ARC activities. Further distributions have taken place based on needs and access to the affected areas.

The ARC cooperates closely with local and national authorities and partners, aiming to support additional 4,500 individuals by mobilizing its volunteers in the branches and staff in Headquarters for distribution of prepositioned relief items.

ARC relief efforts are targeting the 12 most affected areas, specifically in Tizi Ouzou, Medea, Setif, Bourdj Bouriridj, Batna, Bejaia Bouira, Boumerdes and Jijel northern departments of Algeria; Oum El Bouaghi, El Bayedh, Oued Souf and Tebessa in the high plateaus in the north-east of Algeria; and Naama department in the west of the country. The ARC has supported 800 families (4,000 individuals) with food and household items. Additionally, 70 tents have been distributed in the areas without shelters.