Ten days of non-stop rain in the State of Tabasco has resulted in one of the worst natural disasters in Mexico's history. The rains that have caused the rivers to overflow have flooded over 80% of the region. Tabasco's capital Villahermosa resembles New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. The state of Chiapas, which borders Mexico to the South, also reported serious flooding.
While the area is prone to floods, the rapid rise in the water levels caught many by surprise. In the State of Tabasco, homes of over 700,000 people have been flooded or damaged, while 300,000 people remain stranded. In Chiapas over 100,000 people have been affected.
A break from the rain on Friday, allowed volunteers to rescue residents who were stranded on the top floors of their homes or rooftops. All public services, including water and public transportation, have been shut down. There is a severe shortage of food and water.
Though the river levels have started to recede, much of the Villahermosa remains flooded. Much like New Orleans, the only way to remove the water will be to pump it out. Additionally, more rain is expected in the next day or so. So far there has been no major outbreak of diseases, but health officials are monitoring the situation very carefully.
Though many residents have lost everything they owned, they are getting a lot of help from fellow Mexicans from other States. Donations of supplies, food, water and even money are pouring in, and local hotels have converted their meeting rooms and garages to provide shelter for their employees. While things look pretty bad right now, we have a feeling that with all this help and support, the people of Tabasco will be able to survive this tragedy and emerge even stronger than before.