Radio Amateurs Supporting Colombia Landslide Disaster Relief and Recovery Effort
A disastrous landslide in Colombia overnight on March 31-April 1 has left more than 230 dead and devastated the town of Mocoa. Many others are injured or missing, and search crews are scrambling to find survivors in the rubble. An emergency Amateur Radio network now is active on 40 meters (7.093-7.095 MHz, to support the relief and recovery effort.
“The Mocoa and Garzón Fire Departments are aware of the network and also the additional support of HK3NOL, who is mounting additional antennas,” said Roberto Rey, HK3CW. “Radio amateurs from La Plata and Garzón were critical in supporting personnel and rescuers,” he said. “We’re paying attention [to the situation].”
Heavy rainfall in Colombia’s Putumayo Province triggered the mud and rockslide after a river burst its banks, and debris swept into the town, burying homes and residents. President Juan Manuel Santos declared a state of emergency after he visited the town.
Nearly 1300 National System for Risk and Disaster Management (SNGRD) team members are at work in the area. A flotilla of aircraft, vehicles, and watercraft has been deployed for the effort. — Thanks to UNGRD Director Carlos Iván Márquez Pérez; IARU Region 2