Posts Tagged ‘emergency’

The Extinction Protocol

June 2014AFRICA, Senegal — The Ebola outbreak ravaging West Africa is ‘‘totally out of control,’’ said a senior official for Doctors Without Borders, who says the medical group is stretched to the limit in its capacity to respond. The current outbreak has caused more deaths than any other on record, another official with the medical charity said. Ebola has been linked to more than 330 deaths in Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia, according to the latest numbers from the World Health Organization. International organizations and the governments involved need to send in more health experts and increase public education messages about how to stop the spread of the disease, Bart Janssens, the director of operations for the group in Brussels, told the Associated Press on Friday. ‘‘The reality is clear that the epidemic is now in a second wave,’’ Janssens said. ‘‘And, for me, it is totally out…

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The Extinction Protocol

November 1, 2012UGANDAAs of the end of October, 18 cases and nine deaths have been reported as a result of Marburg hemorrhagic fever outbreak, according to WHO. The outbreak began in mid-October, and cases have been reported from five districts in southwestern Uganda, Kampala, Ibanda, Mbarara and Kabarole, with a case fatality rate of 50%. Blood samples from nine patients have been confirmed for Marburg virus at the Uganda Virus Research Institute. Currently, 13 patients have been admitted to the hospital, and their contacts are listed for daily follow-up. The latest confirmed case was admitted to an Ibanda district isolation ward on Oct. 26. The WHO and international partners, including the CDC, the Uganda Red Cross, African Field Epidemiology Network and Médecins-Sans-Frontières, are supporting the national authorities in outbreak investigation and response. The national task force has identified additional health care workers and epidemiologists to strengthen…

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The Extinction Protocol

 August 30, 2012CALIFORNIAThe southern California town of Brawley has taken the unusual step of declaring a state of emergency after a swarm of earthquakes rattled nearly 20 mobile homes off their blocks and forced a slaughterhouse to close, the mayor said on Wednesday. It is uncommon for quake-hardy California cities to declare emergencies due to tremors, but Brawley mayor George Nava said the earthquake swarm is a unique case because it has lasted for days and caused millions of dollars in damage. The cluster of relatively small quakes, which are caused by water and other fluids moving around in the Earth’s crust, began on Saturday evening and climaxed the next day with a 5.5 temblor, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The tremors were continuing on Wednesday and geologists say there have been hundreds in total. Nava said leaders in Brawley, a city of 25,000…

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The Extinction Protocol

August 7, 2012CALIFORNIAOfficials fearing toxic smoke told residents to remain indoors late Monday as a fire at a Chevron refinery released black plumes over the plant in the San Francisco Bay Area. The fire broke out at 6:15 p.m., with flames visible at the top of two refinery stacks. Thick black smoke spewed from the Richmond plant, covering the city and San Pablo, about 10 miles northeast of San Francisco. The fire was contained by 10:30 p.m., but it was not known when the flames would be extinguished, said Chevron spokeswoman Heather Kulp. Smoke continued to pour from the facility late Monday. The blaze started at the refinery’s No. 4 Crude Unit after an inspection crew discovered a diesel leak in a line in the unit, Nigel Hearne, manager of the refinery, told The San Francisco Chronicle. Shortly after the crew evacuated the area, the diesel…

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A coalition of aid agencies working in southern Sudan has called for urgent international action to save the country’s 2005 peace agreement, which it says is threatened by “a major upsurge in violence” and tensions around two key votes to be held in the next year.

“Sudan is at a crossroads,” the 10 agencies say in a report released Thursday, “and the next 12 months could determine the future of Africa’s largest nation.”

The Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) of 2005, which ended a 21-year civil war between north and south, is “extremely fragile” the agencies add. “The humanitarian situation, already one of the worst in the world, is deteriorating; and in the eyes of most ordinary southerners, meaningful post-war development has been absent.”

In a news release issued with the report, one of its co-authors, Oxfam policy adviser Maya Mailer, warned that if violence in the south escalated even further, the situation could become “one of the biggest emergencies in Africa in 2010.”

Paul Valentin, international director of Christian Aid, called for “sustained diplomatic engagement from the international community, including Sudan’s neighbours… A return to war is by no means inevitable, but it depends whether the world heeds the warning signs of the past year and has the political will to save the peace.”

The report notes that 2,500 people were killed and more than 350,000 displaced in southern Sudan last year. “Some communities and observers say that the intensity and nature of… ethnic clashes, in particular the indiscriminate killing of women, children and the elderly, has exceeded anything seen since the end of the conflict.”

Read the full report via allAfrica.com: Sudan: Major Upsurge in Violence Threatens Peace Deal, Say Aid Agencies.