At least eleven people have died due to flooding in the capital of Mauritius, Port Louis. The tragedy happened on Saturday March 30th, 2013. The flooding was caused by a huge rainfall similar to that currently hitting Argentina. Port Louis suffered around 15cm of torrential rain in around 2 hours. The worst tragedy so far was the eight victims who died in an underground car park during the flooding. A national day of mourning has been declared. Hundreds of people are still homeless, roads impassable, and the area is still flooded with rain water, but also sewage, which is likely to cause problems with drinking water cleanliness. The rescue teams are working hard to find missing people and those stranded or in difficulty. There is a fear that casualty figures could rise further.
There is a familiar story of blame being apportioned to those in charge for not being prepared and not responding quick enough to the threat. Apparently Mauritius has a National Disaster Committee. The committee was told of the storms early on Saturday, but didn’t convene for a meeting until Saturday afternoon, leaving them little or no time to respond to the chaos.
Another similar refrain is seen in the point made the Prime Minister of Mauritius, Navin Rangoolam, when he blamed global warming and climate change for the disaster.