Various parts of north and central Colombia continue to be seriously affected by new incidents of landslides and flooding caused by the extreme rainy season.
City firefighters helped evacuate people and attended emergency calls for families from south Bogota’s Pensilvania neighborhood. The evacuations were occasioned by landslides, caused after the Bogota River overflowed a retention barrier that had been set up near the neighboring town of Mosquera.
In Cordoba, meanwhile, swelling of the San Jorge River has caused flooding in various neighborhoods in the municipalities of La Apartada, Buenavista and Montelibano. Some families in Apartada’s El Puente neighborhood have been forced to leave their homes, and there is restricted passage on the road to Taraza.
An alert has also been issued regarding the high levels of the Sinu River, nearby to the area. Marcos Daniel Pineda Garcia, mayor of Monteria, the town most likely to be affected, said that shelters have already been prepared in case families have to evacuate, reported Caracol Radio.
In the department of Boyaca, which neighbors Cundinamarca, authorities reported Thursday that landslides last Sunday, which interrupted the route from the department’s central town of Duitama to northern provinces, will likely continue to block passage for at least 20 more days.
The situation has not been able to be brought under control due to the unceasing instability of the landscape on the roadway.
In the same department, a feud occurred Thursday between various city government officials over the flooding of more than 12,000 acres of pastures and crops that occurred approximately 20 days ago near the central city of Sogamosa.
The government of the Usochicamocha district, near Duitama, blamed the Corpoboyaca company, in charge of maintaining the Chicamocha River system, for failing to do so. Meanwhile, farmers are working to deal with the losses caused by the flooding.
In the nearby Santander department, approximately 1,200 families were affected in the Santa Rosita area of the municipality of Onzaga, after the overflowing Chaguaca River caused damage to the road that leads from the town to Boyaca, cutting rural residents off from the city center, which is located southeast of Bucaramanga.
The season’s extreme rains, which hit their worst point in April, have devastated Colombia, geographically and socially, and are expected to continue into June. As of May 6, the 2011 rainy season death toll had climbed to 116, with 87 more seriously injured.
More than 2,500,000 acres of land are under water, and travel on national roads and municipal highways has been seriously interrupted by the destructive weather.
At least 3.2 million people have been affected by the rains over the course of the past year, according to Colombia’s Interior and Justice Ministry.