Yemen Heavy Rains - Floods, DHA-Geneva Situation Report No 4, 24 June 1996

Report
from UN Department of Humanitarian Affairs
Published on 24 Jun 1996
Ref: DHAGVA - 96/0179
GENERAL SITUATION

1. THE GOVERNMENT PROVIDED UPDATED INFORMATION ON THE IMPACT OF THE DISASTER IN FIVE AFFECTED GOVERNORATES AS FOLLOWS:

GOVERNORATES DEATH
TOLL
MISSING AFFECTED
POPULATION
HOUSING
DESTR./
DAMAGED
ROADS/
BRIDGES
DESTR. OR
DAMAGED
MARIB 30 100 18,000 250/350 60 KM/11 BR.
SHABWA 100 250 20,000 150/1,150 300 KM/8 BR.
HADRAMAWT 12 . . 50/70 180 KM/3 BR.
AL MAHRA . . . 45/470 .
AL JAWF 4 . . 129/40 60 KM/2 BR.
OTHER 21 . . 296 .
TOTAL 167 350 38,000 3,000 600 KM/24 BR.

IN ADDITION, 5,500 LIVESTOCK WERE KILLED AND 30 GENERATORS, 250 WATERPUMPS, 8 HEALTH CENTRES AND 8 SCHOOLS WERE DESTROYED OR DAMAGED.

2. THE UN/DHA RESIDENT COORDINATOR, THE UN ASSESSMENT MISSIONS AND THE UNDAC TEAM REPORTED ON THEIR ASSESSMENT OF THE IMPACT OF THE FLOODS IN THE GOVERNORATES OF MAREB, SHABWA AND AL JAWF. MAREB GOVERNORATE

3. MAREB GOVERNORATE HAS 11 DISTRICTS WITH A TOTAL POPULATION OF 183,000. THE FLASH FLOOD HIT THE POPULATION IN WADIS (20 - 35 KM LONG) IN 6 DISTRICTS. THE UN ASSESSMENT TEAM REPORTS THAT THE IMPACT WAS INCREASED BY THE FACT THAT LOCAL FARMERS HAVE CONSTRUCTED THEIR HOUSES IN THE WADI-BED AND HAD STARTED USING WADI-BEDS AS AGRICULTURAL LAND.

4. ALL HOUSES LOCATED ON THE SIDES OF THE WADI WERE SEVERELY DAMAGED, SOME WASHED AWAY. THE MAJORITY OF HOMELESS PEOPLE ARE LIVING WITH THEIR CLANSMEN. IN SOME CASES, THEY ARE TEMPORARILY RESIDING IN MAKESHIFT CAMPS. SOME CASES OF MALARIA, TYPHOID AND DIARRHOEA WERE REPORTED. AREA SERVICED ONLY BY HEALTH STATIONS WITHOUT MEDICAL DRUGS OR MODERN EQUIPMENT. WATER SUPPLY HAS BEEN DISRUPTED.

5. SEVERE DAMAGE TO ELECTRICITY NETWORK: 113 ELECTRIC POLES WASHED AWAY, 2,300 M OF ELECTRIC WIRE DESTROYED, 4 MAIN GENERATORS (20 - 40 KW) DAMAGED. 2 HEALTH CENTRES AND 8 SCHOOLS WERE ALSO DAMAGED.

6. AGRICULTURAL LAND AND STANDING CROPS WERE WASHED AWAY, INCLUDING MODERN AGRICULTURAL FARMS WHICH WERE CONSTRUCTED IN THE FRAMEWORK OF A WORLD BANK PROJECT. IRRIGATION INFRASTRUCTURE, CONSISTING OF CANALS, PIPES, WELLS AND PUMPS, WAS DAMAGED OR COMPLETELY WASHED AWAY.

SHABWA GOVERNORATE

7. SHABWA GOVERNORATE HAS 5 DISTRICTS WITH A TOTAL POPULATION OF 375,000. AFFECTED DISTRICTS ARE MEIFAH, AS SAID, NISSAB AND BEIHAN, THREE OF WHICH WERE VISITED BY THE UN ASSESSMENT TEAM.

8. HOMELESS FAMILIES ARE BEING SUPPORTED BY RELATIVES OR FRIENDS, BUT MANY OF THEM ARE STILL LIVING IN THE OPEN. CASES OF DISARRHOEAL DISEASES WERE REPORTED AND THERE IS A RISK OF FURTHER CASES IF SAFE WATER SUPPLY IS NOT RESTORED. AN INCREASE IN MALARIA IS ALSO EXPECTED. THERE IS NO IMMEDIATE RISK OF STARVATION, ALTHOUGH FOOD STOCKS ARE RUNNING LOW. FOOD PROVIDED BY WFP IS EXPECTED TO REACH ATAQ - THE CAPITAL OF SHABWA PROVINCE - WITHIN A DAY OR TWO. FOOD IS TARGETED TO BE DISTRIBUTED TO ABOUT 1,150 FAMILIES MADE HOMELESS BY THE FLOODS.

9. IN MANY VILLAGES, WATER SYSTEMS HAVE BEEN DESTROYED OR DAMAGED, LEAVING THE POPULATION WITHOUT ACCESS TO POTABLE WATER. THE GOVERNMENT ESTIMATES THAT 80 % OF THE PUBLIC WATER NETWORK, DRINKING WATER WELLS AND PRIVATE WELLS WERE DESTROYED. IN SOME AREAS, THE POPULATION IS RELYING ON OPEN WATER FROM THE WADI CONTAMINATED WITH RAW SEWERAGE. ACCESS TO WATER COULD BE MADE AVAILABLE THROUGH PROVIDING PUMPS AND/OR GENERATORS TO DRAW WATER FROM OPEN WELLS. WATER FOR THE TOWN OF ATAQ IS BEING TRUCKED IN, AS ALL WELLS SUPPLYING DOMESTIC WATER HAVE BEEN SEVERELY DAMAGED.

10. A NUMBER OF ELECTRICAL POLES AND WIRES COLLAPSED IN THE WADIS. TWO MAJOR ELECTRICAL GENERATORS WERE DESTROYED. ELECTRICITY SUPPLY TO RURAL AREAS IN THE AFFECTED DISTRICTS HAS BEEN CUT OFF. THE PRIMARY ROAD NETWORK REMAINS BY AND LARGE INTACT. HOWEVER, SEVERAL WADI CROSSINGS HAVE DISAPPEARED COMPLETELY. DAMAGE TO RURAL ROADS VARIES DEPENDING ON THE LOCATION, BUT ACCESS TO MOST AREAS IS NOW POSSIBLE.

11. LARGE AREAS ALONG THE WADI (70 PER CENT OF PRODUCTIVE AGRICULTURAL LAND) WERE WASHED AWAY, INCLUDING MOST OF THE FRUIT GARDENS AND SOME CROP LANDS. LOCAL IRRIGATION DITCHES AND INLET STRUCTURES HAVE DISAPPEARED.

AL JAWF GOVERNORATE

12. ON 21 JUNE, THE UNDAC TEAM , TOGETHER WITH A GOVERNMENT DELEGATION AND THE UN/DHA RESIDENT COORDINATOR, CONDUCTED AN ASSESSMENT BY HELICOPTER IN AL JAWF GOVERNORATE, WHERE THEY WERE RECEIVED AND ACCOMPANIED BY THE GOVERNOR. THE TEAM REPORTS THAT AL JAWF IS LESS SERIOUSLY AFFECTED THAN MAREB AND SHABWA. FLOOD WATER HAS RECEDED, LEAVING SMALL SHALLOW STAGNANT POOLS. KEY BRIDGES ON THE (PAVED) MAIN ROAD FROM SANA'A TO AL JAWF HAVE BEEN DESTROYED. ONLY 4 WD VEHICLES CAN PASS AND DELIVERY OF GOODS WITH HEAVY TRUCKS (OVER 10 MT) IS NOT POSSIBLE AT PRESENT. MANY WELLS ARE FULL OF DEBRIS AND REQUIRE CLEANING. STANDING CROPS HAVE BEEN DESTROYED, BUT NO ESTIMATION OF DAMAGE IS PRESENTLY POSSIBLE.

13. LOCAL AUTHORITIES HAVE PROVIDED FOOD FOR THE FIRST FEW DAYS. WATER SUPPLIES ARE BEING TRUCKED FROM NEARBY SOURCES. URGENT RELIEF NEEDS HAVE BEEN MET AND THE SITUATION IN AL JAWF IS NO LONGER CONSIDERED A HUMANITARIAN CRISIS.

INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE

14. A DONOR MEETING WAS CONVENED ON SUNDAY 23 JUNE, CHAIRED BY THE UN RESIDENT COORDINATOR, AND ATTENDED BY EMBASSIES, UN AGENCIES AND NGOS. PARTICIPANTS WERE BRIEFED ON THE OVERALL SITUATION IN THE SIX AFFECTED GOVERNORATES AND EXCHANGED INFORMATION ON ASSISTANCE NEEDS, PLEDGES AND CONTRIBUTIONS. THE UN DISASTER MANAGEMENT TEAM (UN-DMT) MET SUBSEQUENTLY AND AGREED ON THE DISTRIBUTION OF RESPONSIBILITIES AMONG UN AGENCIES.

15. EFFECTIVE COORDINATION AND DELIVERY OF RELIEF SUPPLIES WILL BE ENSURED BY THE ESTABLISHMENT OF AN ON-SITE OPERATIONS COORDINATION CENTRE (OSOCC) WITHIN UNDP SANA'A. THE OSOCC WILL BE STAFFED BY THE UNDAC TEAM, REPRESENTATIVES FROM UN AGENCIES AND GOVERNMENT COUNTERPARTS AND WILL FULFILL THE FOLLOWING MAIN TASKS:

  • MAINTAIN AND UPDATE RELIEF AND REPAIR REQUIREMENTS
  • ACT AS A CENTRAL CLEARING HOUSE FOR DELIVERY OF RELIEF ITEMS
  • UPDATE SITUATION REPORTS AND REPORT ON PROGRESS
  • SUPERVISE IMPLEMENTATION OF RELIEF ASSISTANCE AND REPAIR SERVICES.
REQUIREMENTS FOR INTERNATIONAL ASSISTANCE

16. THE GOVERNMENT IS ENSURING TRANSPORT OF RELIEF ITEMS. DRILLING EQUIPMENT FOR WELLS IS AVAILABLE. BUILDING MATERIAL FOR DAMAGED AND COLLAPSED HOUSES IS EITHER LOCALLY AVAILABLE OF WILL BE PROVIDED BY THE GOVERNMENT.

17. IN COLLABORATION WITH THE GOVERNMENT, THE UN/DHA RESIDENT COORDINATOR AND THE DHA/UNDAC TEAM HAVE IDENTIFIED THE PRIORITIES FOR INTERNATIONAL ASSISTANCE TOWARDS IMMEDIATE RELIEF AND EMERGENCY REPAIR OF INFRASTRUCTURE AS FOLLOWS: (1) WATER SUPPLY AND ROAD/BRIDGE REPAIR,(2) ELECTRICITY AND (3) MEDICAL SUPPORT AND SHELTER.

18. THE FOLLOWING RELIEF ITEMS ARE STILL URGENTLY NEEDED (IN ORDER OF PRIORITY):

1. WATER PUMPS (SUBMERGED,VERTICAL PUMPING CAPACITY 200 TO 300 M)
WATER PUMPS (HORIZONTAL, CAPACITY 500 TO 1,000 L / MIN)
WATER TANKERS (4X4)
2. POWER GENERATORS (UP TO 300 KVA, 220 / 50)
3. BLANKETS AND COOKING UTENSILS.

SOME OF THESE ITEMS ARE AVAILABLE AT REASONABLE PRICES ON THE LOCAL MARKET AND CAN BE PURCHASED FROM DONOR CASH CONTRIBUTIONS.

19. IN A MEETING WITH THE DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER AND MINISTER FOR PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT, THE GOVERNMENT INFORMED THE UN/DHA RESIDENT COORDINATOR AND THE DHA/UNDAC TEAM THAT, IN ADDITION TO SUPPORT DURING THE EMERGENCY RELIEF PHASE, INTERNATIONAL ASSISTANCE WILL ALSO BE REQUIRED FOR REHABILITATION (AGRICULTURAL INFRASTRUCTURE, WATER SUPPLY, ELECTRICITY, MEDICAL CENTRES, SCHOOLS, ETC.), FOR RECONSTRUCTION OF THE ECONOMY OF THE AFFECTED AREAS AND FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A DISASTER MANAGEMENT INSTITUTION WITHIN THE GOVERNMENT.

CHANNELS OF DELIVERY OF INTERNATIONAL AID

20. DHA IS PREPARED TO SERVE AS A CHANNEL FOR CASH CONTRIBUTIONS TO BE USED DURING THE IMMEDIATE RELIEF PHASE. FUNDS ARE SPENT IN COORDINATION WITH RELEVANT ORGANIZATIONS OF THE UN SYSTEM, AND DHA PROVIDES DONOR GOVERNMENTS WITH WRITTEN CONFIRMATION ON UTILIZATION OF FUNDS CONTRIBUTED.

21. FUNDS SHOULD BE TRANSFERRED TO DHA ACCOUNT NO. CO.590.160.1 AT SWISS BANK CORPORATION, CASE POSTALE 2770, CH-1211 GENEVA 2, WITH REFERENCE: YEMEN - FLOODS, DHA GENEVA.

22. CONTRIBUTIONS AND PLEDGES
USD
(REPORTED TO DHA GENEVA SINCE SITREP NO. 3 OF 21 JUNE)
GERMANY DM 100,000 THROUGH DHA
65,359

23. VARIOUS DONORS ARE CONSIDERING TO RE-PROGRAMME CONTRIBUTIONS FOR DEVELOPMENT ASSISTANCE TOWARDS EMERGENCY RELIEF AND REHABILITATION. GENERAL RELIEF COMMODITIES AND MEDICAL SUPPLIES HAVE BEEN DELIVERED BY SAUDI ARABIA, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES AND JORDAN. THE EXACT VALUE OF THESE DONATIONS IS UNDER ESTIMATION.

24. FOR COORDINATION PURPOSES, DONORS ARE REQUESTED TO INFORM DHA GENEVA, AS INDICATED BELOW, OF BILATERAL RELIEF MISSIONS/PLEDGES/CONTRIBUTIONS AND THEIR CORRESPONDING VALUE BY ITEM.

TELEPHONE NO. +41-22-917.12.34
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DESK OFFICER: MS. S. METZNER-STRACK, DIRECT TEL. +41-22-917.21.44
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EMAIL: DHAGVA @ DHA.UNICC.ORG DPR 310 ROY'96 (1)