Belize

Belize - Floods (MDRBZ004): DREF Operation Final Report

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News and Press Release
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A. Situation analysis

Description of the disaster

On 18 October 2015, an area of low pressure moved away from Belize, causing the onset of heavy rainfall that had begun on 15 October and continued across the country, Belize City in particular, where residents were affected by localized flooding. This system continued to produce heavy rainfall across coastal, northern and western Belize throughout the night and into 19 October 2015, causing severe flooding in much of Belize City and various other areas of the country. CEMO evacuated people living in low-lying and extremely vulnerable areas to four different collective centres in the city and a few more in the northern district of Corozal while residents along rivers, creeks, waterways and low-lying areas whose homes were likely to flood, were cautioned to move to high ground or to community collective centres. Farmers were forced to make the necessary preparations for their livestock and crops.

During this time, compounded by heavy rains in both Guatemala and Mexico, Belize received a total of 71 cm of rain over a five-day period. Official government assessments were never disclosed or shared with the BRCS, and access to some of the affected communities was difficult due to fallen live electrical lines lying in flooded yards in some communities in Belize City. It was estimated, that several hundred families were badly affected by this situation.

DREF Operation Final Report Belize: Floods After a day and a half of assisting CEMO with their response and not receiving any information on the assessments that were being carried out, the Belize Red Cross Society determined it was necessary to branch off on its own in order to carry out their own assessments in affected areas in Belize City. According to the plan of action, the aim was to assist 350 families (approximately 1,750 people), 150 families in Corozal and 200 in Belize City. The distribution of relief was in the form of blankets, tarpaulins, hygiene kits, buckets, drinking water, cleaning kits, jerry cans and clothing from 18 October to 1 April 2016.