Floods, Landslides Kill 16, Three Missing
By Paneetha Ameresekere
Sixteen persons died and three were reported missing, while another five were injured due to floods, landslides and earthslips, the Disaster Management Centre (DMC), issuing a report at 6:30 p.m.
yesterday, said. Four were killed in a landslide at Aranayaka, Kegalle on Saturday. Among the balance 12 reported dead, three each were from the Gampaha and Ratnapura Districts, two from the Puttalam District, one each from the Colombo, Galle and Kalutara Districts and another from the Kegalle District. Meanwhile, the three missing were from the Puttalam, Kalutara and Kurunegala Districts.
And the five injured included two from Kalutara and one each from the Gampaha, Ratnapura and Nuwara Eliya Districts respectively. “Floods, landslides and earth slips impacted 270,912 people attached to 67,564 families as at 6.00 p.m. yesterday,” the DMC further said.
A total of 26,846 persons belonging to 6,176 families have been highly impacted and evacuated to 104 safety centres set up to assist the displaced, it said.
Most of these safety centres are in the Colombo (52), Gampaha (18), Kalutara (10) and Ratnapura (nine) Districts. Another 22,932 displaced persons (5,700 families) are residing with relatives or friends, the DMC said. Most affected areas were Kolonnawa, Kaduwela and Kotte in the Colombo District; Wattala, Kelaniya, Biyagama, Ekala, Ja-Ela, Katana, Gampaha in the Gampaha District; Eheliyagoda in the Ratnapura District and Millaniya in the Kalutara District, the DMC report said.
Additionally, some families living in the Kegalle, Gampaha, Galle, Colombo, Ratnapura and Kalutara Districts were evacuated to safe places due to high risk and are residing in these safety centres, DMC said. Fifteen houses have been fully damaged and another and 935 houses partially in the Ratnapura, Gampaha, Colombo, Puttalam, Kalutara, Nuwara Eliya, Kegalle, Kandy, Kurunegala and Galle Districts, as a result of the inclement weather, DMC further said.
Meanwhile, the breakdown of the aforesaid 270,912 people impacted by the inclement weather are: Gampaha (161,683); Colombo (65,342); Puttalam (29,049); Ratnapura (5,614); Kalutara (4,476); Kurunegala (3,653); Kegalle (1,059); Nuwara-Eliya (301) and Kandy (35); respectively. Meanwhile, the National Building Research Organization (NBRO) at 4.30 p.m. yesterday said that since the rainfall during the past 24 hours has exceeded 100mm and if the rains continue, there would be a need to evacuate to safer areas to avoid being victims of landslides.
Those areas are: the Seethawaka and Padukka Divisional Secretariat Divisions (DSDs) and surrounding areas in the Colombo District, Neluwa DSD Galle, Walallawita, Agalawatte, Ingiriya, Bulathsinhala, Matugama, Horana, Palindanuwara and surrounding areas in the Kalutara District, Pasbage Korala DSD and surrounding areas in the Kandy District, Kegalle, Aranayaka, Galigamuwa, Warakapola, Ruwanwella, Kegalle, Bulathkohupitiya, Deraniyagala, Mawanella, Dehiowita, Yatiyantota and Rambukkana DSDs and surrounding areas in the Kegalle District, Ambagamuwa DSD and surrounding areas in the Nuwara-Eliya District and Nivithigala, Ratnapura, Elapatha, Eheliyagoda, Ayagama, Kalwana and Kiriella DSDs and surrounding areas in the Ratnapura District.
The NBRO further said that since the rainfall in the past 24 hours exceeded 75mm in certain places, residents would have to be on the watch for landslides. Those places are Elpitiya DSD and surrounding areas in Galle, Divulapitiya, Gampaha, Attanagalla and Mirigama DSDs and surrounding areas in the Gampaha District, Udunuwara, Yatinuwara and Thunpane DSDs and surrounding areas in the Kandy District, Abanganga Korale, Pallepola and Yatawatta DSDs and surrounding areas in the Matale District and Kuruwita and Imbulpe DSDs and surrounding areas in the Ratnapura District. The Irrigation Department, issuing a report at 3.30 p.m.
yesterday said that though Kuda Ganga and Attanagalu Oya have reached major flood level, their water levels were falling. Similarly, though the waters of the Kelani Ganga and Kalu Ganga have reached minor flood levels, their water levels too were falling, the Department said. The Irrigation Department also said that though the waters of the Magura Ganga, a Kalu Ganga tributary and that of Maha Oya were closer to reaching minor flood levels, nonetheless, currently their water levels too were falling.
Meanwhile, the Met Department, in its weather forecast up to 4 a.m. tomorrow (8) said that showers will occur at times in the Western, Sabaragamuwa and North-Western Provinces and in Galle, Matara, Nuwara-Eliya and Kandy Districts. Showers or thundershowers will occur at a few places in the Uva and Eastern Provinces during the evening or night. Mainly fair weather will prevail elsewhere. Temporary localised strong winds and lightning will occur during thundershowers, it said.
(Pic by Amitha Tennakoon)