Sustained heavy rains in Colombia have exceeded previous records for the month of October, resulting in over 1200 weather-related incidents nationwide affecting over 300,000 people. The Colombia National Unit for Disaster Risk Management (UNGRD) has reportedly responded to over 1200 weather-related events, including landslides, floods, thunderstorms, and hailstorms, among others, which have impacted travel on 100 road corridors, primarily in the departments of Boyacá, Santander, Norte de Santander, and Antioquia. In Magdalena department, officials declared a state of emergency in the city of Santa Marta on Friday, October 26, as rains exceeded 47.5 cm (18.5 in) during the month of October. Traffic disruptions are likely to persist as rains continue through the end of the rainy season in mid-December.
Flooding and landslides are common in Colombia during the rainy seasons, which typically occur in April-May and October-November. The current rainy season is expected to continue into mid-December. The flood risk is generally highest along rivers and the landslide risk is highest in hilly or mountainous zones, particularly in areas lacking proper building code standards.
Individuals present in Colombia are advised to monitor developments to the situation and to adhere to any orders issued by the local authorities. Remember that driving or walking through running water can be dangerous - 15 cm (6 in) of running water is enough to knock over an adult - and that floodwater may contain wastewater or chemical products; all items having come into contact with the water should be disinfected and all foodstuffs discarded.
Copyright and Disclaimer