Officials from the National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction (CONRED) have reported that flooding has affected nearly 9000 people in eight of Guatemala's 22 departments following heavy rainfall on Monday, September 14, and Tuesday, September 15. Over a hundred houses received mild to moderate damage due to the flooding. The worst hit area was Sanarate (El Progreso department), where ten families had to be evacuated due to the rising Las Tunas River.
More sporadic rainfall is forecast across Guatemala in the coming days, and further flooding and associated disruptions cannot be ruled out.
The rainy season in Guatemala usually begins in May and lasts until November. In 2020 heavy rainfall has led to at least 15 deaths in flood-related incidents, including landslides. A further 18 people have been injured, 8524 evacuated, and 1537 displaced to shelters. Around 4500 homes have been damaged, 118 roads affected, and five bridges destroyed. CONRED's most recent report states that in total 1.2 million Guatemalans have been affected by flooding this year.
Those in Guatemala should be aware of the potential for weather-related disruption and are advised to monitor developments and heed any directives issued by local authorities. Moving floodwaters can be extremely dangerous and travelers should never attempt to drive or walk through flooded streets. Floodwater may also contain wastewater and chemical products and present significant health risks.
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