Costa Rica’s National Emergency Commission (CNE) issued a yellow alert – the second highest advisory level – on Sunday for the country’s Northern Zone and Caribbean coast, following heavy rains that have flooded rivers and homes and caused landslides in these areas, according to a press release from CNE.
The rains are mainly affecting the Sarapiquí canton, in northern Costa Rica, where homes have been flooded in the communities of Chilamate, Horquetas, El Tigre and Naranjales, CNE reported.
The Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE) was forced to temporarily close the Cariblanco Hydroelectric Plant due to an increase in the water level of rivers in the Sarapiquí River Basin. This measure should keep water from the dam from flowing into the Sarapiquí River and endangering neighboring communities, according to CNE.
Route 126, which extends from the community of Varablanca to San Miguel in Sarapiquí has been closed and landslides have been reported en route from the towns of Grecia to Río Cuarto, in the province of Alajuela.
The alert level was raised from green to yellow on Sunday to send additional personnel and supplies to the area, CNE president Iván Brenes told Amelia Rueda News.
The rains last week caused a landslide that destroyed 75 percent of a segment of Route 702, which connects the communities of Chachagua de San Ramón and La Fortuna de San Carlos, in the country’s Northern Zone.