The Deadly Storm
With the power of a category 4 hurricane, the strongest cyclone to hit Madagascar in 13 years made landfall on the northeastern coast of the island nation on Tuesday, March 7. Cyclone Enawo produced large amounts of rain, causing dangerous flash flooding and mudslides throughout the week.
Most of the country’s roads are dirt which limits access to the most affected regions. Limited information has come out of those regions, but at least 81 people are reported dead, and more than 247,000 people remain displaced. Estimates state that nearly 434,000 people have been directly affected. With widespread agricultural damage, food availability is expected to be a challenge in remote areas cut off by damaged roads, with people suffering the loss of substance crops and household food supplies. The floods have damaged 104 health facilities and destroyed 16. Access to safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene is jeopardized for large numbers of people, giving rise to possible waterborne disease outbreaks. Our emergency team is at work in the country, making an initial delivery of supplies to a community center housing survivors and responding as needed to support other critical services. The team has already supplied typhoid treatment medication and supplies to a hospital that serves an area of 250,000 people,