Goto main content

Cyclone Enawo makes landfall in Madagascar


Cyclone Enawo, which made landfall on the north-eastern coast of Madagascar on Tuesday 7th March 2017, could affect 2 million people, according to the Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System. Handicap International’s teams already present in the country have been mobilized and are preparing to launch an emergency response based on the needs.

 Archive photo of Cyclone Haruna (February 2013)

Archive photo of Cyclone Haruna (February 2013) | © Handicap International

Cyclone Enawo, ranked at Category 4 of the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale of cyclone intensity, made landfall on the north-eastern coast of Madagascar on Tuesday 7th March, bringing 300 km/h winds.

Four hundred millimeters of rainfall in 24 hours could cause floods in eight regions: Analanjirofo, Atsinanana, Sofia, Alaotra Mangoro, Analamanga, Menabe, Vatovavy Fitovinany and Atsimo Andrefana. The cyclone hit the capital Antananarivo on Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.

Around 900,000 people live in four districts in the direct path of the cyclone (Sambava, Antalaha, Vohemar and Andapa). They are likely to be particularly badly affected. More than 80,000 of them may need immediate assistance, according to OCHA. The cyclone may displace more than 140,000 people and some 10,000 could find themselves without shelter. 

“Cyclones cause casualties and damage homes, crops and roads, and seriously affect the most vulnerable people, particularly those living in makeshift housing and in isolated regions.” explains Xavier Duvauchelle, Desk Officer for Eastern and Southern Africa.

“We are on alert. We have stocks of non-food items on site ready to distribute if necessary, along with technical aids, such as crutches and wheelchairs, for people with disabilities and injuries. During the first post-cyclone assessments, we will make sure the needs of people with disabilities are included in the emergency response provided by other humanitarian organizations.” 

Handicap International in Madagascar

Handicap International has been present in Madagascar since 1986. Its team of nearly 100 staff members works to eliminate disabling diseases such as lymphatic filariasis. It helps to improve the living conditions of detainees in prisons. Handicap International runs a mother and child health program to reduce mortality rates among mothers and infants. The organization also advances the rights and inclusion of people with disabilities by providing support to the organizations that represent them. Handicap International is working to improve access to education for children excluded from the school system.

Date published: 03/07/17


Where we work

Get the latest news about Humanity & Inclusion's work delivered straight to your inbox.