Flash floods in northern Sri Lanka recede, clean up commences
ECONOMYNEXT – Flash floods in northern Sri Lanka which claimed one life and left more than 11,000 homeless, damaged crops, have subsided and clean up efforts are beginning an official said.
More than 86,000 people were affected by the flooding.
"The rain water which caused the flooding has receded," Sri Lanka’s Disaster Management Centre Deputy Director Pradeep Kodippili said in Sinhalese.
"We are starting to clean the houses, after which the residents can move back in," he said.
The DMC reported that 11,310 persons are in 39 relief camps, and are being provided cooked food. The military helped evacuate people to safety.
Flash floods over the holiday weekend partially damaged 316 houses and destroyed 26, with the Kilinochchi District in the Northern Province the worst hit.
President Maithripala Sirisena ordered compensation of up to Rs. 250,000 be paid to renovate each damaged house, in addition to immediate relief of Rs. 10,000.
The DMC reported that only two small and medium sized businesses were damaged.
"There have not been many reports on businesses being disrupted, but agriculture was severely affected," Kodipilli said.
Around 8,000 acres of paddy fields had been completely submerged. Twelve boats were damaged in the fisheries dominant Mannar District.
President Sirisena instructed 40,000 per acre be paid as relief to paddy farmers. Around 11.9 percent of the gross domestic product in the Northern District was from agriculture in 2017.
A World Bank report in September said dry-zone agricultural areas in the Northern, North Western and North Central Provinces of Sri Lanka are among the most prone to climate change and extreme weather events in South Asia. (Colombo/Dec26/2018)