A. Situation analysis
Description of the disaster
Heavy rains in Sudan started on the 28 July and have since continued with further rains forecasted in the coming weeks. As the rains have intensified during the first week of August, they have caused flooding, destruction of infrastructure, houses and livelihoods, and have displaced thousands of people in multiple locations across the country. Khartoum, Blue Nile and River Nile are amongst the most affected states. Floods have also led to damages and affected people in other regions, including Al Jazirah, West Kordofan and South Darfur.
In the Blue Nile State, the state with highest number of people affected so far, the Bout Earth Dam, in Tadamon locality, exceeded its full capacity and collapsed on 31 July 2020. At least 12 neighbourhoods downstream in Bout Town were flooded following the incident, affecting around 3,900 people. Most of them were rendered homeless and are now sheltering with host families, as more than 190 houses were destroyed and over 590 damaged, according to the government’s Humanitarian Aid Commission (HAC). More houses are expected to collapse, as the rains continue in a zone where the land is already extremely wet.
Still in Bout Town, flooding has also damaged at least one school, 14 boreholes, and 218 latrines. According to preliminary information from local authorities, several hectares of crops are likely to have been lost and over 150 livestock washed away, increasing the risk of food insecurity in the months ahead. The damage caused by the heavy rains and flooding is further compounded by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic as well as the locust infestation. Furthermore, the collapse of Bout Earth Dam will likely compromise access to potable water to the more than 84,000 people who live in area, according to HAC.
Still in Blue Nile, the heavy rains have also affected more than 650 people in Wad Abok Village, in Bau locality, 15 km to the east of Bout Town. Several roads are impassable and access to both Wad Abok and Bout areas is only possible via helicopter, hampering Government and aid organisations’ ability to respond.
In the River Nile State, some localities, including Abu Hamad Town, received on 28 July alone, over 44 mm of rainfall, almost three times the daily rainy season average of the area, according to the Sudan Meteorological Authority. According to initial data from HAC and humanitarians in the field, some 75 homes collapsed, over 260 were damaged, and food and belongings of hundreds of people were washed away by flash flooding.
In Khartoum State, over 180 houses were severely damaged or destroyed in Sharg Al-Neel locality, following a storm that hit the capital area on 31 July. Umm Dhawan Ban, Al-Nazyla Village, Abu Qrun Garib, Abu QronـJanoub and Jabareen areas, as well as Omdurman, are the most affected, leaving dozens of families in need of food and emergency shelter, according to the state authorities.
The heavy rainfall has also affected people in Al Jazirah, West Kordofan and South Darfur states. In Al Jazirah State, six people have reportedly died following a violent storm on 29 July in the Kogeila area, east of El Managil Town, according to media reports. With the accumulation of floods situation across the country, SRCS has requested its partners for their support on 2 August 2020.
The ongoing heavy rainfall hampers crop production and increases the risk of disease outbreaks and poses more obstacles to the Government and partners’ efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. Most people displaced by floods are living with host families, exposed to congestion, poor sanitation and inadequate food and other essentials, such as medicines, mosquito nets, as well as protection and maternal services.
The Sudan Meteorological Authority has warned that more heavy rains are expected during the months of August and September in most parts of the country, which can lead to further flooding and displacement. As of 10 August, some 134,059 people had been affected by the floods country-wide, according to OCHA Floods Snapshot. Some areas of North, Red Sea and Kassala State, however, expects below-average rains, a situation that can impact food production in these areas.
As access to many affected areas is still limited with some areas only accessible by air, the assessment data is not complete and will be updated once access improves and further needs assessment can be conducted. The updated information and revised needs will be included in the Operations Update to be published in the coming weeks.