ACT Alliance Appeal: Devastating Fire in Valparaiso, Chile

by Elisabeth Gouel | | ACT Alliance - Switzerland
Friday, 16 May 2014 11:07 GMT

* Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.



Devastating Fire in Valparaiso - CHL142

Appeal Target: US$ 167,659    
Balance Requested: US$ 167,659        

Geneva, 16 May 2014

On 12 April 2014, Valparaiso, capital of the province of the same name, at a distance of 120 kilometres from Santiago, was the scene a ferocious fire that affected 10 hills (Mariposa, Monjas La Cruz, El Litre, Las Cañas, Merced, La Virgen, Santa Elena, Ramaditas y Rocuant) on which most residential zones are located. The fire consumed 1,090 hectares and 2,900 houses, leaving 12.500 persons homeless, and resulting in 15 deaths, most from Cerro Las Cañas.

The blaze began as a forest fire in the woods on the steep slopes of one hill, at the city limits, and quickly spread out of control onto the adjacent hills. Seven hills - La Cruz, El Litre, Las Cañas, La Merced, Ramaditas, Rocuant and Mariposas - sustained major damage. An estimated 76% of homes on these hills in this densely populated area were destroyed. Topography, narrow streets, and the lack of water or fire hydrants on the higher sections of the hills impeded the fire fighters and complicated efforts of residents trying to combat the fire.

This Full Appeal replaces the Preliminary Appeal issued on 1 May 2014.

For the full appeal document, please click here.