Colombia allows 24hr use of airports for disaster relief

Colombia’s Ministry of Environment has ordered the temporary suspension of airport runway curfews in order to better provide aid to areas in Colombia that have been affected by this year’s rainy season, reports to CM&.

Some airports in Colombia have a curfew for landings and take-offs in order to reduce noise in the middle of the night.

The Minister of Environment Beatriz Uribe explained that the suspension of curfews “is to ensure the continued availability of the provision by air transport service, because due to landslides and blockages in the national road network, road traffic has proven to be difficult in the country,” said the minister Beatriz Uribe.

Uribe explained that the measure is “temporary and subject to the implementation of a contingency plan by the Aerocivil, who will take the necessary technical, human, and organizational measures to ensure a timely and coordinated response to the communities affected by these exceptional circumstances.”

The minister also announced the governments Integrated Urban Development Project (PIDU) which will enable families affected by the rainy season to relocate to safe areas. “The PIDU is a mechanism which, in agreement with municipal authorities, will allow for the clearance of land for housing construction and the relocation of human settlements located in areas of high risk,” said the minister.

The minister said that the PIDU will expedite the process of relocating displaced people and will ensure that people have access to health centers, schools and other necessary infrastructure.

At the end of November Colombia declared a national disaster due to the rainy season. Over 300 people have died and over 2 million people have been impacted by the rain in Colombia this year.

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