Bangladesh – Over 5 Million Affected by Monsoon Floods

According to the latest estimates from Bangladesh’s National Disaster Response Coordination Centre (NDRCC), over 70 people have died and 5 million have been affected  across 21 districts by the monsoon floods that began earlier this month.

Of the 21 districts, the worst-hit are Kurigram, Jamalpur, Gaibandha, Sirajganj, Sunamganj, Bogura and Bandarban.

The death toll for this year’s monsoon flooding has climbed to 71, including 56 from drowning, 8 from snake-bites and 7 from lightning.

It is estimated that 5,302,698 people are directly affected by the current flooding. As many as 27,170 houses have been destroyed and 419,336 damaged. As of 24 July there were an estimated 287,513 people displaced.

Floods and landslides have damaged roads and vital infrastructure leaving hundreds of thousands stranded and without power and electricity in particular in Gaibandha and Bandarban districts. According to NDRCC, 6,655 km of road was damaged and destroyed, and 1,463 km of river embankments were either fully or partially destroyed. In addition, 308 bridges and culverts were damaged. Moreover, 203 education institutions are either damaged or are serving as emergency shelters and, 44,106 tube-wells were damaged.

According to the Flood Forecast Warning Center (FFWC) report of 21 July 2019, all major rivers are in falling trend except the Padma river and the rivers around Dhaka. The water level of Ganges-Padma is expected to rise. The flood situation in Tangail and Sirajganj districts may continue to improve, while the flood situation in Manikganj, Rajbari, Faridpur and Munshiganj districts may remain unchanged over the coming days.

The United Nations in Bangladesh said in a report of 22 July, “So far, and compared to 2017 monsoon floods, the 2019 floods are not that widespread. However, they could have a greater intensity for fewer but highly impacted districts and the distress to the people and disruption created could be severe and last for a longer period of time. This is notably due to the fact that large sections of embankments were rapidly washed away upstream. That situation might lead to prolonged flooding and waterlogging issues in these districts with all the consequences it could have. Continuous monitoring of the situation is therefore required, notably in view of a likely new round of heavy rainfall in the next two weeks.”

Featured image: file photo of floods in Bangladesh for illustration only. Credit: Disaster Management Department Bangladesh.