Over 100 municipalities in 16 departments are on red alert due to high risks of landslides, according to a study by several Colombian organizations.
The departments with 106 municipalities at highest risk of landslides include Santander, Norte de Santander, Antioquia, Nariño, Cundinamarca, Boyaca, Huila, Cauca, Caldas, Choco, Tolima, Risaralda, Quindio, Atlantico, Valle del Cauca and Magdalena.
This is according to the Geological Service of Colombia, the Agustin Codazzi Institute, the Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology, and Environmental Studies (IDEAM) and the National Unit of Risk Management.
Carlos Ivan Marquez, director of the National Unit of Risk Management said that the threat and vulnerability “persists due to the high level of humidity which causes saturation of the soil, which in turn generates the risks that there may be land and mudslides, which could cause more emergencies and complications during the winter season.”
“Due to the threat and to avoid the loss of more lives, we will meet with mayors and governors of the country to ask them to prioritize the studies of the Plans of Territorial Ordnance with the aim of evacuating families from high risk areas, resettle them,” said Marquez.
Among the most vulnerable zones and municipalities are the hills surrounding Medellin and the colonial tourist town of Santa Fe de Antioquia.