The Colombian Red Cross urges local authorities to make emergency plans for parts of the country worst-affected by the heavy rains.
Heavy rain has caused damage to 28 out of 32 of Colombia’s departments in the current prolonged winter season caused by the “La Niña” weather phenomenon.
Thousands of people have been forced to flee by landslides, mudslides, and flooding, Carlos Ivan Marquez, the director of the Colombian Red Cross, told La FM Radio.
The emergency plans could help diminish the damage and counteract the effects of this year’s particularly heavy rains, said Marquez.
The Ministry of Environment, Housing and Territorial Development says the phenomenon will reach its maximum strength in the last quarter of 2010. In particular the Caribbean and the Andean regions will see rainfall between 30-40% higher than normal.
“This season has already left 900,000 people affected and injured more than 159 Colombians”, Marquez added.