Argentina - Floods (MDRAR013): Emergency Plan of Action Final Report

Situation Report
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A. Situation Analysis

A.1 Description of the Disaster

On 25 and 26 December 2016, intense rainfall accompanied by hail and strong electrical activity affected more than 20 locations in the provinces of Buenos Aires, Córdoba and Santa Fe; since the rainfall mainly affected low-lying areas (only 55 metres above sea level), the soil was saturated, and there were pre-existing crevices in the river basins (the most important in Argentina) from constant rainfall throughout the year, significant flooding and overflows of rivers and streams occurred.

Pergamino, a city in northern Buenos Aires Province (65 meters above sea level), was one of the most affected municipalities by the rain, receiving some 220 millimetres1 of rainfall in four hours, which caused the Pergamino Stream, its tributaries and effluents, such as Chu Chu Creek, to overflow; this led to flooding across the city, which is organized into 24 urban and peri-urban neighbourhoods, mainly in riverside neighbourhoods (the river that flooded cuts across the city) such as 9 de Julio, Cueto, Centenario, Tocha, San Vicente, Kennedy, Centro, 27 de Noviembre, Belgrano, Martín M. de Güemes and José Hernández (the latter three were considered informal settlements2 ); and Jorge Newbery (also an informal settlement) along Chu Chu Creek. The flood affected more than 13,000 people, i.e. around 11 per cent of the city’s total population.

In addition to the more than 3,400 homes that were flooded (by between 30 and 220 cm of water), the flooding affected basic electrical power, potable water, sewage network and other services. A large response operation was organized by various organizations, including the Argentine Red Cross (ARC). Volunteer Firefighters, Municipal and Buenos Aires Province Civil Defence and Province Ministries were deployed to cover initial humanitarian demands, especially evacuation and first aid and later for the affected families’ return home and reconstruction efforts.

By the end of the operation, the affected homes were no longer flooded, and the people who had been evacuated to the collective centres and those who had self-evacuated to relatives' homes had returned home.

The IFRC, on behalf of the Argentine Red Cross would like to extend thanks to the all donors and implementing partners, for their generous contributions to the replenishment of this DREF. The major donors and partners of the DREF include the Australian, American and Belgian governments, the Austrian Red Cross, the Canadian Red Cross and government, the Danish Red Cross and government, the European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO), the Irish and the Italian governments, the Japanese Red Cross Society, the Luxembourg government, the Monaco Red Cross and government, the Netherlands Red Cross and government, the Norwegian Red Cross and government, the Spanish government, the Swedish Red Cross and government, the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), the Medtronic and Zurich foundations, and other corporate and private donors.

The balance of this operation (28,576 CHF) will be reimbursed to the DREF.