Thursday, October 16, 2008

Red alert for Guanacaste due to heavy rains

(Inside Costa Rica ) - The heavy rain that began falling on Sunday and is still pouring today on most areas of the Central Valley, Central Pacific coast and Guanacaste, has forced the national emergency commission (CNE) to increase the red alert around the country.

Earlier in the week areas in the Southern Zone of Corredores, Golfito, Coto Brus and Central Pacific, Aguirre (Quepos), Parrita and Garabito (Jaco) were all affected by the run off rain water from the mountains, overflowing river banks.

In the Central Valley, Cartago, east of San Jose and Desamaparados on the south have all had problems with mudslides and flooding. The Interamerican Sur between Cartago and Perez Zeledon again was forced closed when a 50 meter stretch of highway was washed away.

The worst of the rain and flooding though is in Guanacaste, mainly the areas surrounding Filadelfia (the area east of Playas del Coco) when flooding has prompted the relocation of hundres to shelters and the water levels of the rivers, especially the Tempisque river continues to rise. Also of concern to area residents is the rise of the Las Palmas river.

So far 125 communities and 18.000 people been affected and three people reported dead from the affects of the heavy rains.

The national weather service is predicting at least 24 more hours of intense rains.

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