Iran - Floods OCHA Situation Report No. 1

Situation Report
Originally published
Ref: OCHA/GVA - 2001/0143
OCHA Situation Report No. 1
Iran - Floods
23 July 2001

This report summarizes information received from UNDP Iran.


1. Flash floods triggered by torrential rains impacted several places in northwest and in northeast Iran. Hailstorm started at 6:25 PM Friday 20 July and the precipitation reached 56 mm in less than one hour causing heavy flash floods in the area. The cities of Meshkinshahr in Ardabil province and Siahcheshmeh in West Azarbayjaan are the most affected. Heavy flash floods have caused major damages to roads, agricultural lands and houses.

2. Three consecutive years of drought and degradation of natural vegetation exposed soil unprotected to heavy rain, causing heavy flash floods.

3. The media reports that flooding had cut off gas and water supplies and damaged roads and bridges. According UNDP Iran, the death toll in Ardabil province has reached 30 and 34 people are injured. Four bridges in the main roads and 10 others in the rural roads have collapsed and piped water network of the city of Meshkinshahr has been damaged. In West Azarbayjaan, 2 people in the city of Siahcheshmeh have been killed and 200 houses have been damaged. Floods in the area have also caused damage to 6 bridges, roads, mosques and schools.

4. Financial losses in West Azarbayjaan have been estimated to be around US $25 million. The extent of damage to agricultural land, orchards and livestock of 14 flood stricken villages is still unknown.

National Response

5. Immediately after the disaster, 400 Government relief and rescue staff, Red Crescent Society, and medical teams started their operation using 50 light and heavy machineries. At the moment, water, electricity and telephone of the disaster hit villages are repaired. Gas and water networks are under repair. Drinking water is being transported by mobile water tanker to the affected villages.

6. Immediate needs of affected people including food, medicines and blankets are distributed in the area and affected people were relocated to safer places.

7. No appeal for international assistance has been received by OCHA to date.

8. OCHA is in close contact with the Office of the UN Resident Co-ordinator in Tehran and will revert with further information, as it becomes available.

9. This situation report, together with further information on ongoing emergencies, is also available on the OCHA Internet Website at

Telephone: +41-22-917 12 34
Fax: +41-22-917 00 23

In case of emergency only: Tel. +41-22-917 20 10

Focal Points (OCHA Response Coordination Branch):

Mr. J. Boutroue (Chief, Africa I and the Middle East)
Ms. T. Ghebremedhin (Desk Officer)
Direct Tel. +41 22 917 1438/3194

Press contact:

Ms. M. Moulin-Acevedo (GVA)
Direct Tel. +41-22-917 31 60
Ms. Phyllis Lee (NY)
Direct Tel. +1-212-963 48 32

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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