El Salvador: Storm Surge Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA) DREF Operation n° MDRSV008

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Description of the Disaster

Tropical storms in the Southern Hemisphere have affected the Pacific coasts of countries such as Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama, Honduras, El Salvador and Mexico, among others. An unusual phenomenon, which occurred 2 to 4 May 2015, produced waves that were two meters above sea level that left behind dozens of victims, evacuees and damage to infrastructure on the Pacific Ocean side of Central America.

Judging from reports from relief organizations and isthmus media, the Salvadoran coast was among the hardest hit. Damage can be seen across the entire coastal line in the departments of Ahuachapán, Sonsonate, La Libertad, La Paz, San Vicente, Usulután and La Union.

Of the population affected in the departments of Ahuachapán, Sonsonate, La Libertad, La Paz and Usulutan, 1 person is missing, 1,367 have been evacuated, 514 are in shelters and 1,270 are providing their own shelter. Another segment of the population has migrated to areas where they have access to family shelters and to the Chapina Garita area. In Guatemala, 20 families from the Botoncillo and Bola de Monte areas are being sheltered in Ahuachapán.

An orange alert has been issued for 13 May as a second round of high waves is expected to hit the Salvadoran coast, which could worsen the situation of the people currently involved or increase the number of victims.