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Oct 12, 2022

“A Lot of Devastation” – NEMO Flies Over Affected Areas

Today, the Minister of Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management joined a team from the National Emergency Management Organization on a flyover to observe the areas that are currently affected by severe flooding. The team included personnel from the Hydrology Unit, the Engineering Department and the ministries of Infrastructure Development and House and Agriculture. The focus was the Cayo District and, as it currently stands, the Mopan and Macal Rivers are still overflowing and floodwaters are flowing down to the Belize District. Later in the newscast we will share with you the preparations being made in anticipation of that eventually. But first, we hear from Minister Orlando Habet who says that an aerial assessment indicates that there is a lot of devastation.


Orlando Habet

Orlando Habet, Minister of Climate Change & Disaster Risk Management

“We flew over the area where Santander had planted sugar cane. The sugar cane was affected. Waters have spread out to as much as they would have gone on the flat areas and what the hydrology department is telling us is that when it bursts over its seams and spreads out, then it starts rising and that’s when you start to see a lot of the water coming up. Certainly a lot of devastation all over the productive sector for agriculture, especially in the Spanish Lookout area. We saw fields of corn that were under water; some that water had passed and the corn is lying down. I think also some beans. We went over an area where you could have seen cattle that were all together because water had formed sort of an island and the cattle moved up to the highest area. You could have seen certainly that some animals had died because you could have seen the crows now perching and trying to look for the remains. What was also interesting is how the river burst open and formed new avenues where to go. And so what we were told from the hydrology unit and the engineering department is that what happens it depends on where most of the water falls and so each flooding event is different from the other. And so whilst we might not have had rise in the river as much as it happened during Eta and Iota, this one has some devastation that also did not occur with that flooding event because of where the water fell. And apparently a lot of the water fell in the productive sector area, apart from what was coming up river in the Macal and Mopan area. So when we went also through the Macal part of the river, we saw some of the damages. Of course, what has now subsiding in San Ignacio and the area of Santa Elena, the bridges are still under water. In the Santa Familia area, the hammock bridge is still under water and so is the one in Calla Creek. And also what we could have seen was some of the damages that occurred with some of the houses that are in the area.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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