Costa Rica Floods – Hundreds Evacuated, 25 Communities Isolated

Costa Rica’s National Emergency Commission (Comisión Nacional de Prevención de Riesgos y Atención de Emergencias – CNE) are carrying out assessments of the damage caused by heavy rain and floods that hit the nation’s Caribbean and Northern regions on 21 June 2015.

Latest reports from CNE say that 25 communities are isolated by the flooding, which has blocked at least 5 major roads in the area. Flooding has also damaged six bridges and 2 aqueducts, as well as homes and property in at least 114 communities. Hundreds have been evacuated from their homes. Currently 576 people are staying in shelters set up by CNE in Puerto Viejo, Horquetas, Jiménez de Pococí and Goshen de Matina. President Luis Guillermo Solis is expected to visit the affected areas later today.

CNE reports that levels of several rivers remain high, including the Chirripó, Sixaola and Sarapiquí.

As of yesterday, Costa Rica’s Instituto Meteorológico Nacional (IMN) reported that the heavy rainfall patterns should be decreasing slightly over the next 24 hours, although heavy rainfall was still possible in localized areas. According to IMN, over 65 mm of rain fell in 24 hours between 23 and 24 June 2015 at Limón International Airport. In La Fortuna de San Carlos, 39 mm of rain fell in the same period.

IMN is warning people to remain extremely vigilant in the Caribbean and Northern regions, particularly in areas prone to flooding and landslides.

Floods in Costa Rica, June 2015. Photo: CNE
Flood damaged roads in Costa Rica, June 2015. Photo: CNE
Floods have damaged at least 6 bridges in the arrea, leaving communities isolated. Photo: CNE
Floods have damaged at least 6 bridges in the area, leaving some communities isolated. Photo: CNE