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Sierra Leone: Floods - Sep 2015

Sierra Leone
Disaster types

Sustained heavy downpour of rain from the 5 to the 6 September 2015 (48 hours) burst river banks and caused destruction in eight communities in Bo and two in one Chiefdom in Pujehun District in southern Sierra Leone. The overall population in the three chiefdoms in Bo District is 8,695 of which 2,630 were directly affected losing properties and being exposed to rain with no appropriate sanitation and some evacuating and taking shelter in nearby schools. The number of people affected by the floods in Bo District is 2,630 in 239 household heads with 463 males 614 females, 645 boys, 607 girls and 301 children under five years. A total of 339 houses are reported destroyed. Pujehun District has 272 persons affected by floods with 41 household heads affected losing 16 houses.

The affected communities have been inaccessible and aid has not reached the vulnerable persons for more than the standard response time creating high risk of epidemic outbreaks of Acute Watery Diarrhoea due to contaminated water sources. It has been reported that one person drowned during the floods. (IFRC, 18 Sep 2015)

2015 and 2016 are predicted as El Nino years and Sierra Leone is one of the countries that will be affected by this weather phenomenon making the country much wetter than it already is. (FAO, 23 Sep 2015)

In October, a request for an additional allocation of CHF 196,950 was issued to enable the expansion of the activities planned in the IFRC Plan of Action to the Bonthe, Freetown and Port Loko following worsened floods in these areas. In total, 24,303 people (4,051 families) will be reached through the operation. (IFRC, 12 Oct 2015) UNICEF continued its operations in flood-affected areas with a focus on WASH and nutrition (UNICEF, 28 Oct 2015)

The resources of the government are already overstretched by the Ebola response and they have clearly indicated to development partners that they will need their timely support and assistance in responding to the disaster to avert further human suffering. (AfDB, 26 Nov 2015)