On Tuesday, May 19, a landslide in Alugala in Ratnapura district (Sabaragamuwa province) killed two people who were buried under debris. Landslide warnings had been issued in several areas in Ratnapura district following heavy rain in the preceding 24 hours. The rain has also caused the Kalu River to rise to dangerous levels, prompting authorities to issue evacuation instructions to families in high-risk areas. Those living on floodplains in the Ratnapura, Elapatha, Kuruwita, Kiriella, and Aygama divisional secretariat areas of Ratnapura district have been advised to evacuate to safe ground, with camps being set up to accommodate people. Search and rescue teams from the armed forces have been put on standby to respond to emergencies in the area. The inclement weather has been linked to the passing of Cyclone Amphan through the Bay of Bengal.
Further flooding, landslides, and associated disruptions to transport are expected in Ratnapura district over the near term.
Individuals in the affected areas are advised to monitor local weather reports, adhere to instructions issued by local authorities, anticipate adverse weather and power and transportation disruptions, and remember that running water can be dangerous - 15 cm (6 in) is enough to knock over an adult.
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