Situation Update: No. 2 – Tropical Storm Podul and Tropical Depression Kajiki, Lao PDR - Tuesday, 10 September 2019, 20:30 hrs (UTC+7)
a. On 29 August (Thursday) and 02 September (Monday) 2019, the Department of Meteorology and Hydrology (DMH), Ministry of Natural Resources, Lao PDR reported potential affected areas in the central and southern part of Lao PDR due to the existence of a Low Pressure Area (LPA), Tropical Storm PODUL, and Tropical Depression KAJIKI. Subsequently, flooding was reported in six (6) provinces: Attapeu, Champasak, Khammouan, Saravan, Savannakhet, and Sekong.
b. Working with the Local Disaster Management and Control Committees in the provincial and district levels, the Government has already deployed emergency response teams from the military, police, and health sectors, equipped with trucks, boats, vehicles, helicopters, tools, and other equipment to evacuate affected people and distribute the following relief: 35 rescue boats, 2,200 packs of drinking water, and 100 family tents.
c. From the preliminary assessment by UNITAR-UNOSAT, within the analysed extent of about 60,000 km2 in Southern Lao PDR, a total of about 1,000 km2 of land appears to be flooded as of 06 September (Friday) 2019. However, this analysis has not been validated yet in the field, and the AHA Centre will closely monitor and report should there be any updated information. As reported by NDMO Lao PDR, through the AHA Centre’s In-Country Liaison Team (ICLT) on 10 September (Tuesday) 2019, several areas in Sekong are not yet accessible for ground assessment.
d. On 07 September (Saturday) 2019, the Prime Minister (PM), National Government leaders, and leaders of provincial authorities in Lao PDR, visited the affected areas, namely Champasak, Saravan and Savannakhet, to assess the status of the affected population and to lead the ongoing emergency response. The PM, on behalf of the Government, presented 1.2 billion kip (US$136,535.71) to authorities to aid victims.
e. As updated in a press conference by NDMO Lao PDR on 08 September (Sunday) 2019, 151,000 hectares of farmland, 251 hectares of vegetable plots, and 3,266 hectares of fish ponds were submerged by the floods. Additionally, more than 252 km of roads, 43 reservoirs, 12 bridges, 313 schools, and 15 hospitals and pharmaceutical dispensaries were affected by the floods. As a result, authorities have used helicopters to reach the affected people in these more inaccessible areas.
f. Based on provincial impact data provided by NDMO Lao PDR today (10 September 2019), Champasak is the most affected province, accounting for 29% of the total affected persons. According to the Pacific Disaster Center’s (PDC) All Hazards Impact Model processed on 08 September (Sunday) 2019, the estimated capital exposure is US$753.4 million.
g. Continued rainfall is expected in all 6 affected provinces over the course of the week. According to the Mekong River Commission (MRC), two hydrological stations in Khong Chiam and Pakse (just north of Champasak) have forecast that the water levels will steadily fall over the course of the week, with the downstream Pakse station forecast to remain above alarm levels for the rest of the week.
h. NDMO Lao PDR has identified the following needs:
● Food: rice, canned fish, drinking water, instant noodles
● Rescue boats and life jackets
● Non food items: family kits, personal hygiene kits, kitchen kits, sleeping kits (the AHA Centre is currently responding to these needs)
● Water treatment equipment
● Cash support
i. The AHA Centre mobilised its ICLT, which met with the National Focal Point of NDMO Lao PDR in Vientiane today (10 September 2019). As of this writing, ICLT is in Pakse to actively support the emergency response.
j. The ICLT is providing technical assistance to NDMO Lao PDR on designing coordination structures and needs assessment during emergency response.
k. The AHA Centre and ICLT on the ground in Pakse are coordinating the delivery of relief items in two batches, as requested by NDMO Lao PDR, from the DELSA regional stockpile in Subang, Malaysia. The first batch is expected to arrive tomorrow (11 September 2019) in Pakse International Airport through our partner, the United Nations Humanitarian Response Depot (UNHRD), while the second batch is expected to be delivered on 12 September (Thursday) 2019 by the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) via Wattay International Airport in Vientiane. In total, the following relief items will be delivered:
● 820 Family Kits
● 6,850 Hygiene Kits
● 1,370 Kitchen Sets
● 1,400 Mosquito Nets
● 1,400 Jerry Cans (10 litres)
l. The AHA Centre is preparing to provide remote support to NDMO Lao PDR on Information Management – specifically on gap analysis, GIS and mapping, from the AHA Centre Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) in Jakarta, Indonesia.