Emergency Update: Floods ~ Chennai, India



Flooding inundates Munroe Island, in Kerala, India. Direct Relief is working to support local health centers with medical supplies and financial assistance in the flood's wake. (Photo courtesy of Amrita University)

After a month of heavy rains in India, a powerful tropical depression has escalated the situation. The downpour has inundated much of Chennai and its surrounding areas. Meteorologists predict the rains will continue for the next three days.

“Chennai city is isolated from [the] rest of the world,” said Arulmony Thangaswamy, Director of Development at Meenakashi Mission Hospital, via email with Direct Relief. “No transportation in the city. Flights are cancelled due to floods in the airport. Many parts in Chennai city [are] submerged. No electricity.”

With 188 deaths reported as a result of floods, the Indian Army and the National Disaster Response Force are deployed in the city’s worst affected areas to rescue survivors.

A 40-foot container with 13,470 lbs of essential medicine and medical supplies from Direct Relief arrived in Chennai this week for distribution to local health facilities.

A follow-up air shipment of wound dressings, pain medication, antibiotics, and other requested materials is scheduled to land Saturday, but weather could delay its arrival.

More updates to follow as information becomes available.

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