the devastation continues
March 25, 2019

Cyclone Idai isn't going anywhere.

The storm has long since subsided over southeast Africa, leaving at least 750 dead from the cyclone and the flooding that followed it. But those waters have created a hotbed of disease, leaving unhygienic conditions and the beginnings of cholera, malaria, and typhoid outbreaks behind, Al Jazeera reports.

Even before Idai made landfall in Beira, Mozambique on March 15, heavy rain had already flooded much of the country and nearby Zimbabwe and Malawi. Winds upwards of 109 miles per hour continued the destruction. Ten days later, the 530,000-person city of Beira is largely dry, but is just starting to reestablish basic communication services, The Associated Press reports. Standing water remains in more remote parts of the country, leading an international Red Cross head to say "we are sitting on a ticking bomb" when it comes to "water-borne diseases," per France24.

Malaria is already a major problem in Mozambique, and with towns still flooded, its propagation is "unavoidable," Mozambique's land and environment minister Celso Correia said. He also said "we'll have cholera for sure," AP notes. Four people were recently diagnosed with typhoid in the central Manica Province, and more cases are expected to pop up, per Al Jazeera.

Some roads have been pumped clear of water, letting two field hospitals and water purification systems embark further into Mozambique. Drones are also being used to locate places that need help. Correia was asked about concerns that humanitarian aid money could be lost in Mozambique's ongoing corruption scandal, and he tersely said "we are doing everything to fight corruption," AP reports. Kathryn Krawczyk

See More Speed Reads