Severe weather causes fatal flooding and landslides in Ecuador

landslide damage ecuador february 2023

Severe weather in Ecuador has led to the death of at least six people in recent days due to flooding and landslides, with a total of eleven fatalities recorded since the beginning of the year. The most affected provinces are Chimborazo, Esmeraldas, Los Ríos, Loja, Manabí, El Oro, and Guayas.

The Risk Management Secretariat (SNGR) reported 35 incidents of flooding and over 20 landslides across the country between February 18 and 21, 2023.

The Pallatanga Canton in Chimborazo province saw four fatalities after floods swept through the area, while two people were swept away by an overflowing river in the San Lorenzo canton in Esmeraldas province.

The floods have also resulted in damage to buildings, roads, and vehicles, with cleanup operations still underway.

Authorities have declared a Yellow Alert in response to landslide threats in areas of the Alausí canton in the Chimborazo province, as weather authorities continue to predict further heavy rainfall across several regions of the country.

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As the damage continues to unfold, the Ministry of Public Works has deployed teams to aid in clearing roads and debris from the affected areas, while the public has been urged to take necessary precautions in the event of further severe weather.

The ongoing heavy rainfall has also affected other parts of the country, including Quito, the capital city, where homes and streets were flooded on January 14, 2023.

The met agency Instituto Nacional de Meteorología e Hidrología (INAMHI) has issued warnings of more intense rains and storms in several regions over the coming days.

The SNGR recorded 171 incidents of heavy rain between January 1 and February 13, affecting 68 cantons of the country, with 161 homes damaged and five deaths reported — 1 each in Napo and Pichincha, and 3 in Carchi.

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References:

1 Ecuador – Floods, landslides – DG ECHO – February 23, 2023

2 Ecuador – Fatalities After Flooding in 5 Provinces – Floodlist – February 23, 2023

Featured image credit: Teleamazonas Ecuador (stillshot)

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