Wednesday, October 05, 2005

El Salvador emergency update



The death toll in Central America from Hurricane Stan exceeds 130, with at least 62 in El Salvador. The number of victims in shelters has dramatically increased. 40,000 people are in shelters in El Salvador. It is overwhelming the ability of the country to cope. According to the BBC

The worst affected countries, El Salvador and Guatemala, are struggling to evacuate everyone at risk. Shelters in both countries are holding thousands of people, while road links have been cut off.

"The emergency is bigger than the rescue capacity, we have floods everywhere, bridges about to collapse, landslides and dozens of roads blocked by mudslides," a spokesman for the Salvadoran Red Cross said.
Some foreign aid has been pledged and more is expected. USAID announced that it would donate $50,000 to relief efforts for victims of the volcano and flooding. The German government promised $240,000.

Meanwhile, Ilamatepec volcano continues to rumble. The government has now expanded the exclusion zone around the volcano to reflect the heightened risk of another explosion. Because the volcano is the highest point in El Salvador, many telecommunications antennas are located near its peak. There is fear that volcanic activity or landslides might damage antennas and disrupt communications in the country.

Rains are expected to continue through Friday.

How you can help.

All of the following organizations are working with the victims of the natural disasters in El Salvador:


See it in pictures. La Prensa has 4 days of photo galleries here.

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