Palestine: Severe Weather – Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA) DREF Operation MDRPS013 – Occupied Palestinian Territory

Drawing No: CW-2022-000163-PSE

A. Situation analysis

Description of the disaster

Based on the extremely cold weather conditions that peaked on January 26, 2022, the Palestinian government called for “collaboration and joint efforts to help affected populations meet current needs.” As a member of the High Council for Civil Protection, and because of its auxiliary role, the Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) subsequently responded to humanitarian needs. From January 20, 2022, the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) was hit by extreme weather conditions including heavy rains, floods, winds, snow and low temperature cold snap. The Meteorological Bureau of the Ministry of Transport released a report on February 10 indicating the amount of rainfall recorded so far, which exceeded the average rainfall levels (Gaza 104% and Beit Hanon 114%).

The heavy rains caused flooding in several parts of Palestine, affecting thousands of people and forcing many families to flee their homes. Extreme weather conditions resulted in the death of four people due to improper use of heating sources in the West Bank. The weather events have deeply affected local communities, particularly in the Gaza Strip, where thousands of people remain displaced and live in semi-structured or transitional shelters or tents due to the loss of their homes during the recent escalation of hostilities. Abnormally low for the Gaza Strip, the temperature approached zero at night, while power cuts disrupted the operation of heating systems. Moreover, gas stations in the Gaza Strip did not have enough fuel to provide people with the fuel they needed to run their own generators. Additionally, vendors providing cooking gas were short of supplies. The heavy rains in the West Bank mainly affected Bedouin communities in the Jordan Valley, communities living near the Israeli separation wall, as well as vulnerable communities residing specifically in old towns and areas near rivers across the West Bank such as Hebron, Jerusalem, Jenin, Qalqilia, Ramallah, Tubas and Nablus.

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