Tunisia: Flash Floods - Emergency Plan of Action DREF n° MDRTN008 Final Report



Description of the disaster

On 22 September (following a storm warning on 21 September), a torrential rain hit the Cap Bon Peninsula (NorthEastern Tunisia) causing water level rise up to 1.7 meters. The rain volume was approximately 200 millimetres (7.9 inches) of rain in Nabeul Province and up to 225 millimetres in the city of Beni Khaled, according to Tunisia’s National Institute of Meteorology. This was the heaviest rainfall since the institute began keeping records in 1995.
The subsequent flood resulted in the loss of 6 lives and damage of infrastructure, houses, property, and livelihoods.
More than 6,000 families have been affected by the floods. Some of them fled their homes seeking shelter in neighbouring high-ground houses and villages, while other chose to stay in their damaged houses moving to rooftops rather than risking crossing flooded areas to reach evacuation points. Water supply through pipelines was limited, and the water available was contaminated. Electricity has been cut off in some districts for safety reasons.
On 18 October, a second flood, predicted by weather forecast, hit the country affecting the governorates of Tunis and part of Nabeul causing damage to houses and infrastructure.
Please find the map of the disaster response operation in the end of the document.

Summary of response

Overview of Host National Society

On 23 September, the Tunisian Red Crescent (TRSC) deployed National Disaster Response Team (NDRT), together with the Local Disaster Response Team (LDRT) to conduct rapid needs assessment, meetings, and interviews with the affected communities and authorities, to get more information on the situation and identify the eminent needs. Since then, the situation was constantly monitored, and the response adopted accordingly. On 19 October, the rapid assessments were extended to the second flood-affected areas.
The areas targeted by the response were distributed according to needs and presence of different local actors. The government-led the coordination meetings, where the response was distributed to reach out all affected population including those affected by the second flood. TRC made its beneficiary selection in coordination with the local authorities.
TRC response included:

• Management of two temporary shelters (hosting 800 families),

• Monitoring cases with special protection needs and providing daily meals to the sheltered and a varying number of additional families.

• TRC-trained volunteers provided CBHFA and psychosocial support to the people traumatised by flood experience and to children in the schools affected by the floods.

• TRC in coordination with the local authorities and several organisations deployed its volunteers to carry out distributions of relief items and help clean the flooded area of debris, mud, and the drainage of flood waters.

• TRC volunteers carried out restoration campaigns where they supported the affected people in minor repairs and paint work in the damaged houses.

• TRC-trained volunteers promoted vector related hygiene and waste management at household level to reduce risks of vectors.
The two floods overwhelmed the local response capacity. The pre-positioned stocks of relief items, distributed to the population from TRC main warehouse, were later replenished through this DREF. Relief items, including food parcels and household items were procured locally and TRC volunteers distributed these items through distribution points and direct distributions to the affected families. The distributions were accompanied with awareness promotion, collection of disaggregated data and conducting beneficiary satisfaction surveys.

Overview of Red Cross Red Crescent Movement in country

Through DREF operation management, the IFRC supported TRC in their immediate emergency response to the needs of the flood-affected people. IFRC MENA Regional Office (RO) provided technical inputs to planning, implementation and undertook monitoring and evaluation of the operation. The IFRC North Africa Country Cluster Support Team (CCST) worked closely with TRC to assess the situation and identify priority needs and capacity gaps for support. ICRC is present in Tunisia but was not involved in the response to the floods.

Overview of non-RCRC actors in the country

On 22 September, local authorities dispatched police, army and rescue teams to the flood-affected areas, mobilised ambulances and two helicopters. Municipalities provided shelters in public places and provided some basic relief items.
Civil defence assisted people to get back water to their houses. Rotary and other local organisations, through TRC, collected and distributed in-kind donations to the affected population.