Flash floods leave one dead, thousands displaced in Malawi-Xinhua

Flash floods leave one dead, thousands displaced in Malawi

Source: Xinhua| 2024-03-01 01:16:00|Editor: huaxia

LILONGWE, Feb. 29 (Xinhua) -- Flash floods have devastated two lakeshore districts of Malawi -- Nkhotakota in the central region and Karonga in the northern region, leaving one dead and thousands displaced, authorities have confirmed.

The Department of Disaster Management Affairs (DoDMA) announced Thursday that the floods have displaced more than 7,000 people from Nkhotakota alone, and the displaced have been evacuated to nine camps in the district. DoDMA also confirmed one death and reported that 900 people who were trapped in various areas have been rescued by the national search and rescue team led by the Malawi Defense Force (MDF).

Meanwhile, the search and rescue team is ferrying relief items, including maize flour and tents, as well as medical personnel and supplies/equipment to areas that require urgent attention, according to DoDMA.

In Karonga, an earlier DoDMA preliminary update said more than 600 households have been affected by floods following heavy and continuous downpours that led to the swelling of one of the big rivers, North Rukuru, in the district. Other than houses and business structures being destroyed, undisclosed hectares of cropland with rice, cassava, maize, and other crops have been washed away in both districts.

Persistent rains continued to cause further damage to roads and bridges Thursday, and according to DoDMA, the delivery of essential services to those impacted is highly affected.

The authorities have said immediate needs for the displaced communities include food, clothing, shelter materials such as family tents, blankets, dignity kits and wash facilities (cups, pails, water treatment chemicals and mobile toilets).

Nkhotakota and Karonga are among the districts that lie on the shores of Lake Malawi and are prone to flash floods.