In order to assist the people of Vanuatu and organizations deploying to the country, Humanity Road volunteers carried out a “digital disaster response” from March 11-27, 2015 consisting of two activations in response to Tropical Cyclone Pam.
Tropical Cyclone Pam has impacted the Solomon Islands, Kiribati, and Tuvalu creating serious damage including lost homes, road damage, and power and communication outages. The following report is specific to Vanuatu Islands. (image credit an animated map of global weather conditions via https://www.facebook.com/EarthWindMap)
Download recent situation reports (PDF)
Situation Report: Cyclone Pam, Vanuatu, March 2015
Situation Report #8 – (period covered: March 13 to March 21)
Final Report – Updates concluded on March 21, 2015 8:00am (Vanuatu time)
20 March – Day 7: Category 5 Cyclone Pam has caused widespread, severe damage and loss of life through the country of Vanuatu, particularly in the Central and Southern regions, which experienced a direct hit. A state of emergency is in place for Shefa Province, Vanuatu, and is likely to be extended to Tanna, Tafea, Malampa and Penama Provinces as previously inaccessible and incommunicado areas are reached and assessed. The storm made landfall in Vanuatu around 12:30am on 14 March. Communications networks have gone down, and there is massive property damage in many areas. Water has been restored to up to 80% of Port Vila but in other areas, waterborne diseases such as diarrhea are a major risk. Hospitals & supplies incurred serious damage; 2 UNICEF tents have been set up; supplies have arrived and more en route. (Source: NDMO Sitrep 3 – Mar 16)
Over the past 7 days, Humanity Road volunteers have sifted through nearly 300k Twitter and Facebook messages. Responders from across the globe are on-site and providing critically needed relief, but Pam’s devastation was widespread, and many nearly-obliterated communities desperately need basic relief. Vanuatu includes over 80 smaller islands, many of which are devastated and have so far been unreachable and/or may be underserved by responders.
Below are highlights for the past 48 hours which includes Urgent Needs, Significant Updates, Social Media Highlights, and Highlights for Underserved Locations. The section below that is in the full report on the Humanity Road website includes emergency contact information and contacts for hospitals and utilities.
UPDATE MEDEVAC Need on Tanna Resolved:
Social Media General Highlights:
As of March 21, 8:00am Analysis of Social Media:
Facebook Highlights last 24 hours:
20 Mar: Many of the new posts are changing from status questions and updates to relief efforts.
Vanuatu Cyclone Pam 2015 Find My Family – a site created for people to post information about missing loved ones.
Humans of Vanuatu – information and pictures from a local in Port Vila.
Pacific Island Living – this page has shared information and news including news from resorts and tourist areas reporting their status.
Twitter Highlights from Last 24 Hours:
Underserved Locations Highlights:
Use Right Click – to open links in a new window
Regional and Local Links
Status of Communication Networks
Digicel has phone charging stations @ Chew Store & Market House Kiosk 8.30am-4.30pm; Flagship Store 8am-5pm (source)
Public charging stations are being deployed across the islands so that customers can power their phones and Digicel is providing US$250,000 in free credit so that customers can get in touch with their loved ones as services are restored. (source) (source)
— 5:00pm – Via Digicel Vanuatu – A jpg map has been posted on Digicel FaceBook with red circles of areas where service has been restored. Digicel advises the public to follow them in FaceBook for official updates on further restorals. Digicel also advises that while service may be restored, power remains out and cell phones may be dead (source).
Sites that re up include: VTU002 Shefa_SDA Secondary; VTU003 Shefa_Malapoa Estate; VTU007 Shefa_Erakor 3G Sector A
VTU008 Shefa_Ellouk; VTU023 Shefa_Pango; VTU024 Meteo Head office; VTU004 Shefa_Ohlen; VTU005 Shefa_Lalua
— TVL has one tower for mobile working, near the hill going up from Vila town to Namba 2. (source)
Communications Companies & Contact Information
Email: Telecom Vanuatu
From overseas: +678 7781111
Email: Telsat Pacific
Phone: +678 23407
FM107, Port Vila (streaming online – currently offline as of 8am, 15 Mar)
ABC Radio Australia (streaming online with #TCPam reports)
Very few operators in YJ. All I can suggest is IARU Region 3 COE’s:
3.600, 7.110, 14.300, 18.160 and 21.360 MHz (source: @VK2CSW)
Free national emergency numbers:
– Ambulance 112
– Paramedics (Promedical) 115
– Police 111
– Fire 113
– Ports 114
Reunification & Other Assistance
Phone: (+678) 27418
Emergencies: 777 37 53
International Red Cross family reunification page. List missing persons and register persons alive.
Vanuatu Cyclone Pam website (includes a Locate Friends/Relatives page)
Vanuatu Cyclone Pam 2015 Find My Family (Facebook page being used by people searching for family/friends)
Vanuatu Cyclone Pam 2015 (Facebook page)
People are posting information about relatives they haven’t reached.
US Embassy in Papua New Guinea (covers Vanuatu)
Emergency hotline for American citizens: 675-7200-9439
Australian High Commission emergency number for people in Australia worried about friends/relatives in the Pacific: 1300 555 135. Open 24/7. They need full names, date of birth and where they were when cyclone hit.
Help for Australians:
From anywhere in world: +61 2 6261 3305
From Australia: 1300 555 135
La Casa D’Andrea E Luciano, Rue Pierre Lamy
Phone: 00 678 22933
Email: British High Commission Honiara (covers Vanuatu)
Phone: (+677) 21705
— The Japanese government is sending a 14 person medical team to Vanuatu. They will arrive tonight 18th Mar. The Japanese Red Cross is also going to send their medical team. (source)
–An Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Taskforce of 54 emergency services personnel led by Fire & Rescue New South Wales (NSW) (FRNSW), Australia is deploying. Will include one doctor and 6 paramedics. (source)
— Video of inside Lenekal Tanna Hospital via CNN -19.533948, 169.289778
— Vila Central Hospital is functioning, but kitchen, store, and children’s wards need rebuilding. Makeshift hospital wards will be set up in the hospital carpark using UNICEF tents. An Australian medical team is on the ground, and a New Zealand team is arriving 17 March. UNICEF has shipped containers for the management of deceased persons. (source)
—@AmeriCares deploying #NewYork mobile medical team (source)
— WHO is sending health and emergency response experts with supplies and UNICEF are also working with the Ministry of Health to conduct an immunization campaign in response to a measles outbreak that began before the cyclone (Source)
Health Service Profile for Vanuatu from 2012 (reference)
Hospitals, Port Vila
— Port Vila Bay Hospital
Email: Port Vila Central Hospital
Phone: 22 100
Email: Northern Provincial Hospital, Luganville
Phone: 36 345
Email: Medical evacuation from the outer islands is conducted by local aircraft with paramedic and advanced life support equipment. Overseas medevac for non-critical patients (seated or on stretchers) is onboard Air Vanuatu’s Boeing 737-300 to Brisbane, Sydney, or Auckland. Seriously ill patients are evacuated by Queensland-based air ambulance with a medical team
AMBULANCE SERVICE / MEDICAL
Status of Evacuation Centres/Shelters
— More than 3,370 people are sheltering in some 48 evacuation centres in Efate. (source)
–– Location of Evacuation Centres Map, MapAction, 17 March 2015
–ShelterBox is sending 1,000 shelter kits from prepositioned stock to help repair damaged buildings in #Vanuatu. http://bit.ly/1LfAzVi
— around 3,300 people sheltering in 37 evacuation centres. (source)
— 1,640 shelter kits for use by families of five people and more than 1900 solar lanterns with inbuilt mobile phone chargers enroute from @DFID
— Diesel fuel is needed for chainsaws and generators. (source)
— Something to cook with is needed because the wood is too wet to make fires. (source)
Power is needed to turn on the water pumps or mosquitoes will become a problem. (source)
— Via NDMO Sitrep #3 – NDMO formed an Evacuation Centres Working Group to ensure that the safety, protection and needs of the evacuees are being prioritised with other operational planning.
— An Evacuation Centres Working Group comprised of Vanuatu Red Cross, Protection, Gender and Disability, WASH and Logistics specialists to manage assessments and assistance to people.
— Assessments of Evacuation Centres and Registration of evacuees are to start on Sunday, 15 March.
Offices & Contact Information
PO Box 618 Port Vila
Phone: (+678) 27418
Emergencies: 777 37 53
Fax: (+678) 22599
— The VRCS has coordinated with the Vanuatu NDMO to mobilize VRCS volunteers through national radio broadcasts. The VRCS headquarters in Port Vila was closed for safety reason at midday 13 March prior to Pam’s landfall in Port Vila. The NDMO headquarters is being used as operational base during this period. VCRS is co-lead of the logistics cluster and has been tasked with the provincial logistics cluster in Tafea Province. VCRS is coordinating with Australian Red Cross and New Zealand Red Cross to provide relief supplies. (source)
Organizations offering help, rides, etc.
— All schools have been damaged or destroyed. School supplies, temporary schools, and rebuilding materials and plans are needed. (source)
— Vanuatu Society for People with Disability Center was destroyed but all staff are safe. (source)
— Via UNOCHA Sitrep 1: Many of the evacuation centres have numerous women and young children sleeping in close quarters, so protection issues will be paramount in coming weeks. (source)
Status of Nursing Homes, Orphanages, Schools, etc.
Port Vila has been badly damaged, so the kids have nowhere to go to school. http://bit.ly/1baaqXT
Roads / Ports
–Port Vila airport has reopened with limited facilities. Planned flights for Monday 16 March are: NF11 Sydney – Vila DEP 0600 ARR 0920| NF10 Vila-Sydney DEP 1120 ARR 1515| NF 01 Sydney – Vila DEP 1615 ARR 2000| NF20 Vila – Brisbane DEP 2200 ARR 2345| All Timings local time. Check in 2 hours prior departure Tuesday flight schedules to be advised. VANUATU DOMESTIC FLIGHTS ARE SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. (source)
— via UNOCHA – the Port Vila airport is now open for commercial flights. (source)
— Military flights are being allowed to land.
Airports and where to find information
There are three international airports ranked in order of importance:
— Bauerfield International Airport. Main destinations: Dillon’s Bay, Emae, Ipota, Lamap, Lamen Bay, Lonorore, Luganville, Norsup, Paama, South West Bay, Tanna, Tongoa, Ulei, Valesdir,Auckland, Brisbane, Honiara, Nadi, Nouméa, Suva, Sydney.
— Santo-Pekoa International Airport. Main destinations: Brisbane, Craig Cove, Gaua, Longana, Port Vila, Sola, Walaha.
— Whitegrass International Airport: Anatom, Aniwa, Dillon’s Bay, Futuna, Ipota, Port Vila
Status of Highways/Roads
Maritime, Shipping, and Ports
Port Arrivals, Departures,Wind Forecast: (Click buttons for each feature after following link)
Power, Gas and Water
Maps/Situational Awareness Reports
— Access to water and electricity is rapidly being restored in Port Vila. (source)
— Via NDMO Sitrep 3 – As of Mar 14 – UNELCO have advised that the electricity is out everywhere. There appears to be greater than 80% damage to power lines, and the power will not be fully restored for several weeks.
Companies & Contact Information
Customer service number: 26 000
PO Box 19 Lakatoro
Phone/Fax: 48 415
Emergency: 77 44 323
PO Box 899, Lenakel
Phone/Fax: 88 959
Emergency: 77 62 450
— UNITAR/UNOSAT Satellite Map of damage on Tanna Island, 15 Mar 2015.
— Reliefweb Sitreps for Vanuatu
— Emergency Response Coordination Centre (ERCC), ECHO Daily Map, 17 Mar 2015.
— Location of Evacuation Centres, MapAction, 17 March 2015
— Map Real time Wind Surface Currents
— Digital Maps: Digital-Cyclone.org
— Vanuatu Met Current Bulletins and Warnings
— Humanitarian Response.info Maps
Mapaction has deployed a team
— UNOCHA Situation Report No. 4. 18 Mar 2015
— UNOCHA Situation Report No. 3, 17 Mar 2015
— UNOCHA Situation Report No. 2, 16 Mar 2015
— Red Cross Emergency Plan of Action Operation Update (download)
— UNOCHA Situation Report No. 1, 15 Mar 2015
— 10:00pm: North Pentecost Update: Gardens were badly damaged, thatched roof houses blown away. Mauna Health Centre reports 5 casualties. Two admitted. (source)
— UN OCHA Flash Update– Mar 14 44 unconfirmed deaths on Penama Province. Estimates hardest hit islands are Maewo (population 3,569), Ambae (population 10,407) and Pentecost (population 16,843)
— IFRC Bulletin 13 Mar: International Federation of the Red Cross
Hashtags: As of Mar 14 7:00am Vanuatu time – This event includes tweets across multiple countries and many islands, towns and villages – with no evidence of common hashtags in use by any general population. There are location mentions, event mentions, variations of event names and variations of location names. This is complicating data mining efforts. Highlights on Hashtags:
Major Hashtags #TCPam, #Pam, #CyclonePam, #Vanuatu, #PortVila #WithVanuatu
Micro Hashtags (Locations) Lakatoro, Luganville, Malampa, Malakula, Ambrym, Paama, Penama, Pentecost, Ambae, Isangel, Maewo, Pénama, Port Vila, Sanma, New Caledonia, Torba, Tafea, Torres Islands, Banks Islands, Efate,
Noisy Hashtags (unrelated tweets in stream) Malo, Santo,
Silent Hashtags (no mentions in the stream) Gaua, Kwakea, Merelava, Merig, Mota, Motalava, Ureparapara, Vanua Lava, Hiw, Linua, Metoma, Tegua
Twitter Accounts of Interest
Facebook Accounts of Interest
Pictures and Videos
17 March 2015
Drone footage – cyclone damage
Photo – school in Freshwota being used as an evacuation centre
Photo collection – from the Guardian
16 March 2015
Video – Water tank collapse
Photo – damage to Vanuatu Society for People with Disability Center
Photo – downed tree in front of Australian High Commission
Photo – destroyed ferry shelter.
15 March 2015
Photo – destroyed bridge, only one from north Efate to Port Vila.
Photos – via Facebook Group
15 March 2015
Photos of damage in Vanuatu via Guardian UK
Photo of destroyed house in Port Vila
Photos of Holiday Inn
Photos of damaged CARE office
Status by Provinces
Remote villages made of leaves and other flimsy materials are vulnerable (Map)
Animals in Disaster
Relief & Agencies Responding
Animal Shelters / Rescues/ Veterinarians
Vet Clinic Port Vila Phone: (678) 25702
Other Relief Information:
World Animal Protection has deployed a disaster response team and will immediately begin helping animals. Their work will complement humanitarian relief by protecting people’s friends, and often their main source of livelihood. In Port Vila we anticipate pets will need vet care, shelter and emergency feed. In more rural areas, we know that most farms would not be equipped for a disaster of this magnitude so, working with local vets and agriculture officials, we will go where the animal needs are greatest and focus our relief efforts there.(source)
Where to Donate, Needs, Volunteering
Give to Vanuatu (information on where to take donations in Australia)
Vanuatu Cyclone Pam 2015 (Facebook page – share information about needs and offer help).
Vanuatu Cyclone Pam website (how to volunteer, places to donate, equipment needs, family locator, etc.)
Agencies Providing Relief and Recovery Work are listed on our 3W report
Alice, Anne, Cat, Chris, Gijs, Joshua, Allyson, John, Alberto, Robert, Judith, Gerald, Cindy, Heidi, Sarah, Christoph, Laurel