After earthquake harm in northwest Syria, pressing motion wanted to forestall collapse of water methods and keep away from devastating humanitarian penalties [EN/AR] – Syrian Arab Republic
Geneva (ICRC) – Survivors of the large earthquake that struck northwest Syria one month in the past face the prospect of devastating public well being challenges after the quake additional broken the area’s ageing water system, placing it beneath new stress that will increase issues of a potential collapse.
NEWS RELEASE 06 MARCH 2023
Aleppo’s water system – which is so outdated that spare components are not out there for it – has come beneath growing stress, first from 12 years of battle and now the earthquake. After dropping their houses within the earthquake, extra individuals at this time are counting on the identical system to satisfy their water wants. Direct harm to important components of the infrastructure decreased the system’s effectivity and raised the chance that contaminated water might pollute the availability.
Moreover, many elevated water tanks on the roofs of homes have been destroyed by the earthquake, resulting in additional stress on the system. Components of town’s sewage system, which was already closely broken in the course of the battle, collapsed, exacerbating the wants in a area already struggling to deal with the consequences of greater than a decade of battle.
“The potential of devastating public well being penalties as a knock-on impact from the earthquake is frighteningly excessive. A brand new public well being emergency such because the unfold of infectious ailments can be a catastrophe for the area,” stated Fabrizio Carboni, Close to and Center East regional director for the Worldwide Committee of the Pink Cross in Syria who has been overseeing earthquake response operations.
Entry to protected consuming water is a problem affecting tens of millions of individuals throughout Syria. Earlier than 2010, 98% of individuals in cities and 92% of individuals in rural communities had dependable entry to protected water. Immediately, solely 50% of water and sanitation methods perform correctly throughout Syria.
“Communities have pulled collectively, sharing their meals, water and garments. Nonetheless, the dimensions and gravity of recent wants within the affected area, and throughout Syria, requires elevated help. Sturdy options for important infrastructure are important to public well being. That is very true for communities which were more durable for humanitarian actors to succeed in,” Mr. Carboni stated.
For these communities, dwelling in areas like Idlib the place the dwelling circumstances are catastrophic and the wants are large, the ICRC calls on all events to the battle to put aside political concerns and facilitate humanitarian work in order that aid is supplied to those that want it, whatever the modality.
1000’s of individuals sought short-term shelter after the earthquake, resulting in tough dwelling and sanitation circumstances in Aleppo, Hama and Lattakia. At one short-term shelter website in Aleppo, 850 persons are sharing seven bogs. At one other website, in a former cement manufacturing facility, youngsters play ball near areas contaminated by unexploded ordnances.
On the morning of the earthquake, ICRC groups delivered kits of medical provides to Aleppo hospitals solely hours after the quake hit. Since then, over 57,000 individuals within the affected areas have benefited from well being help from the ICRC and Syrian Arab Pink Crescent. Additionally they supplied water for individuals at six shelters in Aleppo and supplied aid help to over 30,000 people who included meals and important objects.
In 2022, the ICRC supported the rehabilitation of 32 water amenities throughout the nation and greater than 17 million individuals throughout Syria benefited from completely different water-related interventions. Lately, the ICRC carried out, together with the Syrian Arab Pink Crescent, hundreds of engineering tasks tackling water and sanitation methods throughout Syria aiming to supply sustained assist to native service suppliers to curb the decline in service supply throughout the nation.
For extra data, please contact:**
Adnan Hizam, ICRC Damascus, firstname.lastname@example.org or +963 113 380 6205
Imene Trabelsi, ICRC Beirut, email@example.com or +961 3 13 83 53
Fatima Sator, ICRC Geneva, firstname.lastname@example.org or +41 79 848 49 08
**Jessica Moussan, ICRC Dubai, email@example.com or +971 50 425 4091
**Extra on ICRC’s earthquake response:
**Over the past 4 weeks, ICRC has been working along with the Syrian Arab Pink Crescent (SARC) to reply to the wants of earthquake survivors within the final 4 weeks, together with:
- Water trucking for six collective shelters in Aleppo for 10 days. Round 115,000 water bottles have been distributed in in Aleppo, Latakia and Hama.
- Gentle rehabilitation for twenty-four collective shelters which have hosted the earthquake-affected households in Aleppo.
- Donated mills to 3 bakeries in affected areas in Latakia, which allow these bakeries to supply bread for round 200,000 individuals.
- Greater than 57,000 individuals within the affected areas are benefiting from completely different well being assist actions.
- 1,000 physique luggage have been delivered to hospitals and forensics amenities in Aleppo and Latakia.
- Surgical medicines, medical provides and tools have been donated to 6 hospitals in Aleppo, Latakia and Hama.
- The ICRC supported SARC cell well being items to supply fundamental well being providers/first assist to individuals in collective shelters in Aleppo, Latakia and Hama.
- Greater than 30,000 individuals obtained canned meals and aid objects in collective shelters in Aleppo, Latakia and Hama, together with blankets, mattresses, photo voltaic lights, hygiene kits, and kitchen units.
Extra on ICRC’s work to enhance entry to wash water throughout Syria:
ICRC’s work to enhance entry to water and important infrastructure in Syria reaches greater than 16.5 million individuals throughout Syria. This work consists of:
- The ICRC helps the Al-Khafsa water therapy plant, situated 80 km east of Aleppo metropolis, which is likely one of the essential sources of suppling tens of millions of individuals with water. Al-Khafsa water therapy plant is irredeemably broken, and it will take no less than 5 years to rehabilitate this facility beneath secure circumstances. If Al-Khafsa water therapy plant was not functioning, 3.2 million individuals can be affected with no various water supply.
- 15 million individuals have been supported by a disinfection programme to make sure protected consuming water in 13 governorates.
- 450,000 individuals obtained water delivered by vans in Aleppo, Rural Damascus, Raqqa, and Hassakeh.
- Practically 140,000 displaced individuals and returnees benefited from renovations and upgrading of housing, water, and sanitation in 44 collective shelters and neighbourhoods all through the nation.
- 32 water amenities throughout the nation have been rehabilitated and upgraded, and eight hospitals, 62 well being factors, and one bodily rehabilitation centre had their infrastructure improved.
- Round 710,000 individuals benefited from the infrastructure assist to 12 public bakeries – provide of manufacturing line, rehabilitation works, and energy.
- The water, sanitation and hygiene amenities in over 280 faculties and examination centres have been rehabilitated – Damascus, Rural Damascus, Daraa, Sweida, Quneitra, Homs, Hama, Lattakia, Raqqa, Deir Ezzor, and Hassakeh governorates.