Heavy rains and violent surf are forecast for the island of Hispaniola - i.e. the countries of Haiti and the Dominican Republic - through Sunday, November 19.
According to Haitian authorities, rains and subsequent flooding have left at least five people dead since November 15, including three in Nord-Ouest department - in Saint-Louis-du-Nord - and two in Sud department - in Les Cayes and Île-à-Vache. The Haitian weather service UHM announced that the departments of Artibonite, Nord, Nord-Est, Nord-Ouest, Grande'Anse, Sud, and Ouest - home to the capital Port-au-Prince - would be the hardest hit. People in areas vulnerable to flooding and landslides are being advised to remain vigilant in the coming days.
As of Friday, November 17, flood and landslide alerts issued by the Dominican Republic’s Emergency Operations Center (COE) are in place for much of the country. Yellow alerts - indicating a medium-level risk - are in place in the southwestern provinces of Pedernales, Barahona, and Independencia. Lower green alerts are in effect in 16 other provinces.
The island has been hit by frequent rain storms since late October and the ground in many areas remains saturated, elevating the risk of flooding and mudslides.
Individuals present in affected areas are advised to keep abreast of local weather forecasts and 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.
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