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16 Dec 2019 | 04:27 AM UTC

Congo: Over 150,000 people displaced by flooding as of December 15 /update 1

Flooding in Plateaux, Cuvette, Sangha and Likouala displaces over 150,000 people as of December 15; further flooding expected over the coming days, weeks



As of Sunday, December 15, heavy rains have caused significant flooding along the Congo river, especially in the Plateaux, Cuvette, Sangha, and Likouala departments since mid-November. Over 150,000 people have been displaced, particularly from communities along the Ubangi River. According to local media, at least three people were killed by the flooding in Brazzaville. Widespread infrastructure damages have been reported in the affected areas, prompting authorities to declare a state of natural catastrophe and humanitarian emergency for the above mentioned departments on Wednesday, November 20. In Brazzaville, the Base district located near Maya-Maya International Airport (BZV) has been particularly badly affected.

Additional flooding is possible in the coming days and weeks as heavy rains are expected until at least the end of December. Associated transportation, business, and power disruptions are anticipated in the affected areas.


Individuals present in affected areas are advised to keep abreast of the situation, avoid areas directly hit by flooding, and adhere to any orders issued by the local authorities or their home governments. 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. Be aware that the risk of contracting water- and mosquito-borne diseases tends to rise after periods of heavy rainfall.