Description of the disaster
Heavy downpours which started on 28 August 2018 caused large-scale flooding and landslides to low-lying areas in North and South Hwanghae provinces of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). A total of 76 people lost their lives and 75 people reported missing just after the disaster. Three people were later identified to be alive and the remaining 72 missing people were presumed dead. Over 3,200 houses were destroyed in addition to clinics, schools and kindergartens. Over 10,000 people became displaced since their houses were fully destroyed, partially destroyed, or submerged. Significant damage was also done to water supply systems. Persistent heavy rains (100 mm/hr for several hours) over a 48-hour period caused flash floods in five counties in North Hwanghae and four counties in South Hwanghae provinces, which are located in the southwestern part of the country.
A total of 3,237 houses were affected in the North and South Hwanghae provinces with some partially damaged, some completely destroyed, and others submerged in floodwater. The most affected area was Kumchon County in North Hwanghae province. In total, it is estimated that 10,681 people were displaced and lived with relatives, neighbours, or in temporary shelters. Entire communities were affected, especially those that were close to rivers. In Eup Town, Kumchon County, a landslide destroyed several houses and, in the valley, and over 77 houses were washed away, with a significant loss of life. The government provided population figures for the affected counties, indicating a total of 581,268 people affected, of which 308,070 were in North Hwanghae and 273,198 in South Hwanghae.
At the time of the disaster, DPRK had already been affected by a series of weather-related disasters. The country suffered from a heatwave in July and August 2018, with 13,768 people assisted in South Hamgyong and South Phyongan provinces due to damaged crops and health-related issues associated with heatstroke. Additionally,
Typhoon Soulik made landfall on the Korean peninsula on 23 August 2018, bringing rain and winds leading to severe flooding in South Hamgyong and Kangwon provinces, with approximately 60,000 people having been displaced. The combined effects of these events posed a significant negative effect on harvests with potentially high impact on nutrition and health. Three operations were therefore carried out in separate locations by DPRK RCS.
To allow for immediate disaster response, DPRK RCS, with support from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), requested a DREF allocation of CHF 383,123. This operation focused on supporting DPRK RCS in disaster response activities by mobilizing volunteers and staff in conducting needs assessments, providing non-food items (NFIs), conducting health and water and sanitation interventions, and DREF operation Operation n° MDRKP012 Date of Issue: 19 May 2019 Glide number: FL-2018-000144-PRK Date of disaster: 28 August 2018 Operation start date: 17 September 2018 Operation end date: 17 February 2019 Host National Society: Democratic People’s Republic of Korea Red Cross Society (DPRK RCS)
Operation budget: CHF 383,123 Number of people affected: 581,268 people Number of people assisted: 24,000 people (6,000 families)
N° of National Societies involved in the operation: DPRK RCS N° of other partner organizations involved in the operation: The State Committee for Emergency and Disaster Management (SCEDM) Emergency Plan of Action Final Report DPR Korea: Floods and Landslides providing first aid (FA) and psychosocial support. The operation lasted for five months, longer than a standard DREF operation, which allowed time for lengthy procurement processes for DPRK.