Early July 2020, the Ayeyarwady River water level has raised due to heavy rainfall especially in Amarapuya township in Mandalay.
19 July 2020, the Ayeyarwady river dike broke near Sagaing-Mandalay Highway. The event caused a sudden flood downstream in nearby township and villages in Amarapura area. MRCS volunteers were deployed ERUs and Mandalay branch conducted the 48-hour damage and needs assessment (DANA) and coordinated with the state government and local authorities supported the evacuation process.
27 July 2020, IFRC allocates 200,683 Swiss francs (CHF) from its Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support the National Society.
16 October 2020, DREF Operation Update No. 1 is published.
Description of the disaster
In July 2020, heavy rain and the raising of Ayeyarwady river has raise the emergency alert level especially in Amarapura township. Based on UNOCHA report, on 19 July 2020, Ayeyarwady river dike broke along the river near the SagaingMandalay Highway region, affected nearly 25,000 people. Temporary shelters for the displaced population have been set up in Amarapura Township, in the southern part of Mandalay city. Floods hit Sagaing, Magway, Mandalay regions and Kachin state. Among of these areas, Mandalay region area suffered the most, namely, Amarapura, Tataroo, Sintkaing, Thabaikky twonship in registering over 6,466 people affected.
According to the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) of the Ministry of Social Relief, Welfare and Resettlement, as of Thursday, 23 July 2020, 6,400 households have reportedly been affected. On the other hand, European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations - ECHO Flash report highlighted that there were efforts on pre-emptive evacuation of 1,478 households (nearly 4000 individuals) while 6,400 households (Approximately 28,160 individuals) have been affected by flood of which 14,266 people (3,362 families) displaced and were being supported in 117 evacuation centers.
Since March 2020, the country has also been contending with the continuing spread of COVID-19. A special committee was formed to tackle the coronavirus chaired by the Union minister for international cooperation and the minister of health and sports to mitigate and control the COVDI-19 virus. This imposed stringent measures on the country including physical distancing, enhanced community quarantines (ECQ), and limitation of movement within the entire country. By flowing the protocol, MRCS volunteers carried out the activities with considering the COVID-19 pandemic situation and maintain social distance in all activities.
This has had implications on MRCS implementation the other ongoing operations, including the Mandalay flood response (MDRMM015), with activities having to be rescheduled or redesigned to adapt to the current situation. Twomonth extension to the response timeframe was approved to accommodate the changes that have been required, and to enable commitments to the affected population to be met.
Summary of response
Overview of host National Society In accordance with Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS) Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), the MRCS Emergency Operation Center (EOC), monitored and collected the information on the weather condition and flood alert warnings, and issued regular updates on the situation as it evolved.
The National Headquarters (NHQ) informed the respective branches to be on heightened alert as situational scaled up and ensure their readiness to respond. MRCS Mandalay branch communicated to volunteers to implement early warning measures in communities that were expected to be affected and placed Red Cross Volunteers Team. A total 100 volunteers were actively involved since the beginning of the event and 200 people were evacuated in safe place. The initial interventions were establishing the welfare desk for PSS and disseminated the information early warning massage, initial assessment, coordination with local government units and supports on temporary shelter construction as well as in relief distribution.
Likewise, the MRCS Disaster Management Department also coordinated and supported on preparedness and response capacity of 23 warehouses which includes the Mandalay warehouse. Emergency Response Units (ERU) for disaster relief, health, water and sanitation, FA, search and rescue, and welfare team were activated, and used 10 life buoys, stretchers and Regional Disaster Response Teams (RDRT) were mobilized