Government Adopts Measures in Response to La Niña Phenomenon - Expat Community

Government Adopts Measures in Response to La Niña Phenomenon

May 20, 2024 | News & Articles, Panama | 0 comments

By Marlene Testa

The Ministry of Government issued resolution 58 on April 22, 2024, advising citizens to take several measures in anticipation of the La Niña climate phenomenon, which is expected to bring flooding.

Panama’s government has established recommendations for the rainy season and the onset of La Niña, with a total of thirteen guidelines outlined in the resolution published in the Official Gazette.

Key measures include:

Keeping drains clean: Ensuring drainage systems are clear to prevent flooding. Intense rains can overwhelm drainage systems, so it’s important to clean household drains and gutters before the rainy season begins.
Inspecting roofs and gutters: Ensuring that roofs are in good condition and free of leaks.
Maintaining an emergency kit: Keeping basic supplies like potable water, non-perishable food, flashlights, batteries, and medications on hand to be prepared if weather conditions impede mobility.
Elevating belongings: If living in flood-prone areas, raising belongings and appliances to avoid damage from sudden floods.
Knowing evacuation routes: Having a plan in place in case evacuation from the home becomes necessary due to weather conditions.
Staying informed: Following weather forecasts and alerts issued by local authorities through media and social networks.
Proper waste disposal: Not disposing of garbage in river channels, streams, and gutters to prevent blockages and floods.
Avoiding crossing swollen rivers and flooded streets: Refraining from crossing rivers and streets that are flooded to ensure safety.
Keeping emergency contact numbers accessible: Having the phone numbers of emergency services readily available.
Monitoring landslide-prone areas: If living in areas susceptible to landslides, conducting frequent inspections for signs of risk, such as cracks, rock detachments, and changes in tree positions.

If there is an imminent risk of a landslide, it is advised to evacuate immediately to the nearest elevated ground. Citizens are urged to follow instructions from the National Civil Protection Service (Sinaproc) and emergency services.

The Meteorology and Hydrology Institute of Panama has indicated that the probability of La Niña conditions, which trigger abundant rainfall in Panama, is increasing. This climate event follows El Niño, which caused high temperatures, reduced rainfall, and forced the Panama Canal to reduce its transits.


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