Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Papua New Guinea: Highlands Earthquake Situation Report No. 9 (as of 7 May 2018) | May 7, 2018

This report is produced by the National Disaster Centre and the Office of the Resident Coordinator in collaboration with humanitarian partners. It was issued by the Disaster Management Team Secretariat and covers the period from 17 to 30 April 2018. The next report will be issued on or around 15 May 2018.


• 270 000 people in need of assistance across four provinces of Papua New Guinea’s highlands.

• 42,557 people (11,041 households) remain displaced in nine care centres and affected communities.

• From 21-22 April, 32.5 MT of food were distributed by humanitarian partners in Urila, Lil, Kopa,
Ponga/Merep in Southern Highlands Province.

• 4,055 people reached with shelter kits in Southern Highlands, Hela and Western provinces, and 28,217 people reached to date with shelter related non-food items in the three provinces.

• 71 community mobilizers trained on providing psychosocial support.

• Total estimated cost of rehabilitating damaged social infrastructure – primarily health and education facilities in three provinces – is US$105 million.

270,000 people in need of assistance

$62 M funding required

32.5 MT metric tons of food assistance distributed

28,217 people reached with shelter-related NFI support

683 hygiene kits distributed

Situation Overview

On 26 February 2018, a 7.5 magnitude earthquake hit the Highlands Region of Papua New Guinea (PNG), affecting an estimated 544,000 people in five provinces – Enga, Gulf, Hela, Southern Highlands and Western provinces, with Hela and Southern Highlands the most affected. More than 270,000 people, including 125,000 children, have been left in immediate need of life-saving assistance. Since the initial 26 February earthquake, at least 202 aftershocks have occurred, of which six were of a 6.0 or greater magnitude.

A partial assessment of key social infrastructure (primarily focusing on health and education facilities) in Hela, Southern Highlands and Western provinces was commissioned by the Australian Government on behalf of the National Department of Works. The completed assessment concluded that total estimated cost of rehabilitating assessed social infrastructure across the three provinces is approximately AUD 140 million (USD 105 million). The assessment does not include rehabilitation of road infrastructure, which is estimated by the Government to cost approximately PGK 100 million for earthquake-affected sections of the Highlands Highway.

A mobile Vulnerability Assessment Mapping (mVAM) survey was conducted from 22 March to 12 April 2018. The results indicate that 14 per cent of 1,534 households contacted in affected areas were displaced in the wake of the 7.5 M earthquake. The survey further showed that households in nine of 31 Local Level Governments (LLGs) surveyed experienced high or extreme food shortages, with the destruction of food gardens in these areas removing the main livelihood and food supply source for the majority of people.

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