Thousands of people have been affected by flooding and heavy rain in Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala over the last few days. Five fatalities have been reported in Nicaragua.
Local meteorological agencies say the rain was caused by two low-pressure centres, one off the Pacific coast and another off the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua. Some areas have recorded over 300 mm of rain in 24 hours. Rivers have overflowed in all three affected countries.
In Nicaragua, the Las Canoas Dam has reached all time highs – beating previous records set in 1998 during Hurricane Mitch – threatening to flood the homes of around 20,000 people downstream.
So far affected departments include Managua, Granada, North and South Caribbean, Boaco and Jinotega.
Nicaragua’s National System for the Prevention, Mitigation and Attention of Disasters (SINAPRED), reports that 2,713 houses have been flooded and 30 destroyed in the municipalities of Teustepe, San Lorenzo, Tipitapa, Mateare, Managua, Granada and Bocana de Paiwas.
One person died crossing a swollen river in Jinotega. Four miners were also reported killed when the Oconwás River overflowed in Las Minas, Rosita municipality, North Caribbean Coast Autonomous Region. At least 2 people are still missing.
In Honduras, the Permanent Contingency Commission (COPECO) reported that a total of 1,700 families are affected by the severe weather, mostly in the north of the country, and that the organisation has the capacity to serve 30,000 families.
Local media reported that around 10,000 people were evacuated from their homes in La Lima on 25 October, where the Chamelecon river overflowed.
Earlier this week COPECO declared a red alert for 24 hours for the departments of Bahía, Cortés, Atlántida and Colón Islands, and a yellow alert for Yoro, Santa Bárbara and Gracias a Dios.
In Guatemala, the National Coordinating System for Disaster Reduction (CONRED) said that around 1,000 people have been affected by the severe weather in the departments of Alta Verapaz, El Progreso, Petén and Quiché. Two rivers in Petén – La Pasión and Usumacinta – are well above flood stage.