Cyclone IDAI – Mozambique

Intense tropical cyclone Idai struck the coast of the Mozambican province Sofala on the night of Thursday 14 to Friday 15 March 2019. The port city of Beira, with a population of almost half a million, was directly impacted by the cyclone, experiencing wind gusts reaching 230 km/h and a high storm surge.

Following its landfall in Mozambique, the cyclone then continued across to Zimbabwe where it hit the eastern part of the country. Its ensuing journey inland gave rise to torrential rainfall, causing human and material damage in both countries as well as in Malawi.

At the beginning of June 2019, the Mozambican government reported 1.85 million people affected, 400,000 people displaced, 603 deaths, and more than 10,000 cases of cholera or malaria.

The French Red Cross, through PIROI, joined forces with Mozambique Red Cross to help those affected:

In coordination with IFRC, 4 humanitarian shipments were dispatched to Beira, totalling almost 100 tonnes of equipment (tarpaulins, warehouse tents, generators, lighting kits, tools, housing reconstruction kits, mosquito nets, buckets, jerrycans etc.). In order to improve sanitation conditions at temporary accommodation centres and reduce the risk of waterborne diseases such as cholera, PIROI also sent 120 emergency latrines.

French Red Cross emergency response units (ERUs) were also mobilised in Mozambique to help the local population by:

  • Deployment of an Emergency Response Team specialising in water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) working alongside the Spanish Red Cross;
  • Help installing a field hospital with the Canadian and Finnish Red Cross Societies;
  • Organisation of on-site distributions with the Danish Red Cross.

All these efforts were made possible thanks to financial and logistical support from French Defence staff, the Crisis and Support Centre (CDCS) of the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, the French Armed Forces of the Southern Indian Ocean (FAZSOI), the ECHO Directorate-General, the Departmental Council of Reunion Island, the Municipality of Le Tampon, the Municipality of Paris

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