2015 Guatemala landslide

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2015 Guatemala landslide
Guatemala in Guatemala.svg
Location of the Guatemala Department in Guatemala
DateOctober 1, 2015
Time9:30 p.m. (UTC−06:00)
LocationEl Cambray Dos, Santa Catarina Pinula, Guatemala Department, Guatemala
Coordinates14°34′35.3″N 90°29′45.8″W / 14.576472°N 90.496056°W / 14.576472; -90.496056
CauseLandslide due to heavy rain[1]

On October 1, 2015, heavy rains triggered a major landslide in the village of El Cambray Dos within Santa Catarina Pinula, Guatemala—15 km (9.3 mi) east of Guatemala City, killing at least 280 people and leaving dozens unaccounted for across the village. The landslide leveled much of the village, leaving some areas under 15 m (49 ft) of earth and debris.

Background and event[edit]

El Cambray Dos is a mountain village, situated at the foot of steep hills.[3] Municipal officials had previously urged residents multiple times, starting in 2008, to move to other areas because of landslide concerns.[4][5] In November 2014, the Coordinadora Nacional para la Reducción de Desastres (Conred) urged residents to "immediately" relocate to avoid future disaster.[6] The event was preceded by several days of heavy rain, associated with the nation's annual rainy season, that caused moderate flooding, other landslides, and two deaths across the nation.[7][8]

The rains saturated the steep mountains surrounding and following exacerbation from the nearby Pinula River,[5] the mountainside gave out around 9:30 p.m. local time (UTC−06:00) on October 1.[4][5] The landslide caught most residents off-guard, leaving them trapped within mud and debris.[9] Some areas were buried under 15 m (49 ft) of earth and debris.[10] Approximately 125 homes were damaged or destroyed; based on this, authorities estimated that 450 people were unaccounted for by the evening of October 2.[5][11] This was later reduced to 350 the following day with hopes of finding more survivors diminishing.[10] At least 131 people were confirmed dead.[12] In addition to the fatalities, 36 people were injured.[13]

The landslide is one of the deadliest in recent years in Guatemala.[3] Approximately 600 people, residents and rescuers, searched through mud and debris for survivors.[14] By October 3, 1,800 people were conducting search and rescue.[10] Heavy machinery was brought in to clear debris.[9] Local authorities established shelters for those rendered homeless.[14] Residents across Guatemala donated items, such as clothes and food, to relief agencies. At least 50 tons of aid had been collected according to El Nuevo Herald.[6] Cuba and the United States offered to provide assistance.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Guatemala mudslide toll rises to 253 dead". YAHOO! NEWS. 9 October 2015. Retrieved 9 October 2015.
  2. ^ "Search in Guatemala landslide ends with 280 dead, 70 missing". Reuters. 14 October 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Landslide kills 26, hundreds missing". Radio New Zealand. Reuters. October 3, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  4. ^ a b c Johan Ordonez (October 3, 2015). "At least 30 dead, hundreds missing in Guatemala landslide". Yahoo! News. Agence France-Presse. Archived from the original on October 4, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  5. ^ a b c d "Guatemala: un deslave deja 31 muertos y 450 desaparecidos" (in Spanish). BBC Mundo. October 2, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  6. ^ a b Henry Morales (October 2, 2015). "Luto por deslave que dejó 30 muertos en Guatemala". El Nuevo Herald (in Spanish). Agence France-Presse. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  7. ^ "Two Dead and More Than 56,000 Affected Due to Rains in Guatemala". Prensa Latina. September 28, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  8. ^ "Lluvias afectan a 920 personas" (in Spanish). ReliefWeb. Redhum. October 1, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  9. ^ a b "An estimated 600 missing and 30 dead after Guatemala landslide". 9news. Agence France-Presse. October 3, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  10. ^ a b c "Hundreds still missing after deadly landslide in Guatemala; authorities doubtful of finding more survivors". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Reuters. October 3, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  11. ^ Sonia Perez D (October 3, 2015). "Guatemala mudslide death toll reaches 56, more feared dead". Yahoo! News. Associated Press. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  12. ^ Ben Brumfield (October 4, 2015). "Death toll after Guatemala landslide tops 130". CNN. Retrieved October 5, 2015.
  13. ^ "Guatemala mudslide leaves hundreds missing". BBC. October 3, 2015. Retrieved October 3, 2015.
  14. ^ a b Sofia Menchu (October 3, 2015). "Hillside collapses on Guatemalan town, killing 25; hundreds missing". Reuters. Retrieved October 3, 2015.