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16 Apr 2020 | 02:55 AM UTC

Yemen: At least two missing after flash floods in Sana’a April 13

Flash flooding causes infrastructural damage and leaves at least two people missing in Sana’a on April 13; expect associated business and transportation disruptions

environment
health
YEM

Event

Heavy rain on the evening (local time) of Monday, April 13, caused flash flooding in Yemen's capital Sana'a. The floods resulted in damages to homes and shops, and overturned cars. According to local sources, at least two people are missing in Al Sabeen district. Floods in the city have also raised concerns of a cholera outbreak due to the country's poor sanitation facilities, and a cleanup is currently ongoing as of Tuesday, April 14.

Associated business and transportation disruptions are to be expected in Sana'a over the coming hours and days.

Context

Yemen's rebel held capital of Sana'a, located in the country's mountainous north, is prone to flash floods during the rainy season.

Cholera is an infectious disease caused by the Vibrio cholerae bacteria that can induce acute diarrhea. The risk of death is greatest among people with compromised immune systems, such as malnourished children or those living with HIV. However, even among healthy adults, cholera can be fatal within a matter of hours.

Advice

Individuals in Sana'a are advised to monitor local weather reports, avoid areas affected by flooding, anticipate lingering transportation disruptions, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities.

Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters; 15 cm (6 in) of running water is enough to knock over an adult. Floodwater may contain wastewater or chemical products; all items having come into contact with the water should be disinfected and all foodstuffs discarded.

To reduce the risk of contracting cholera, wash hands regularly, drink only bottled or purified water, and avoid eating raw or undercooked foods. Seek immediate medical care if you believe you may have contracted the disease.