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Colombia: Earthquake: 1999/01/25 Country Information on DRR

Period 1999/01/25
Country or District Colombia
Event Type Earthquake
Outline On 25 January 1999, an earthquake occurred at 18.19hours (GMT) in Colombia: magnitude of 6.0 on the Richter Scale, epicentre in the Department of Valle del Cauca, latitude 4.59 north and longitude 76.18 west.
Human Impact Physical Impact Others
OCHA Situation Report No. 8 19 Feb 1999
1,171 people died and 4,765 were injured following the earthquake of 25 January 1999.
Currently, 67,539 people are living in shelters.

95 aftershocks occurred during the period 25 January to 12 February 1999, many with an intensity of between 3 and 4 on the Richter scale.
OCHA Situation Report No. 7 12 Feb 1999
Consolidated figures indicate that 1,052 persons lost their lives and 4,500 were injured.
Some 205,000 people are homeless. Of this number, approximately 67,000 people have been placed in 123 temporary shelters.

Latest figures show that approximately 51,600 houses were destroyed / damaged, of which some 50,000 in the Departments of Quindio and Risaralda.
Of 15 hospitals surveyed in the Department of Quindio and Risaralda, seven are not operational.
Approximately 90 per cent of the damaged aqueducts inArmenia have been repaired, but problems continue to subsist in the Municipalities of Barcelona, Pijao, Buenavista and Cordoba.
Phone communications are being reestablished, and full services are expected to resume in 2-3 weeks time.

OCHA Situation Report No. 6 5 Feb. 1999
About 180,000 people are still in need of immediate relief assistance (the authorities are carrying out a census of the people affected by the earthquake, to know the exact dimensions of the tragedy and the existing requirements). Water lines are being repaired (in Armenia about 70% are already in operation, while water supply systems in Calarc・and Barcelona are not yet in operation). Removal of rubble and debris will take a considerable amount of time because of the magnitude of the task at hand, which requires specialized equipment.
A National Fund has been created for the reconstruction of the coffee-growing region headed by Luis Carlos Villegas (Executive Co-ordinator of the Presidency) and composed of various businessmen and high-ranking public officials.
OCHA Situation Report No. 5 3 Feb. 1999
According to the Colombian Red Cross, figures regarding dead and injured people have not changed since OCHA Report of 31 January 1999 (950 dead and approximately 4,000 injured).
Some 250,000 people are reportedly homeless.
Some 65 per cent of Armenia´s population now have normal access to water supply and 80 per cent have normal access to electricity. With the arrival of between 2,500 and 3,500 Colombian soldiers, the security situation is now under control in Armenia, where looting and rioting were widespread last week due to the dwindling food supply.
Food availability is becoming less critical. The Government of Colombia is providing 150 tons of food aid to disaster areas per day, and food assistance from donors is beginning to arrive on the ground.
According to OFDA/USAID reports, the rescue phase has officially ended, following a declaration by the President of Colombia, and international search and rescue teams (SAR) have already started leaving the country.
OCHA Situation Report No. 4 31 Jan. 1999
According to data (as of 29 January 1999) received from the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Bogota, the number of dead has risen to 950, and the number of injured has increased to nearly 4,000. Damage caused to housing:
・Department of Quindio: up to 95 per cent in some sections of the city of Armenia; up to 80 per cent in the municipalities of Barcelona, Calarcá and la Tebaida.
・Department of Risaralda: 50 per cent in the centre of the city of Pereira.
・Department of Valle del Cauca: between 10 and 20 per cent in the Municipalities of Alcalá, Caicedonia, Ulloa.
・Department of Tolima: 15 per cent in the Municipality of Cajamarca.
OCHA Situation Report No. 3 28 Jan. 1999
Preliminary figures show that number of dead increased to over 900 (of whom 582 in the Department of Quindio), and the number of injured to approximately 3,400. According to the Colombia Red Cross and UNICEF, approximately 200,000-250,000 people were left homeless.
A preliminary analysis shows that approximately 60,000 hectares of coffee plantations have been directly or indirectly affected by the disaster.

Since the earthquake of 25 January 1999, a total of 230 after-shocks have been reported, 42 of them greater than 2.0 on the Richter Scale, but they have decreased both in frequency and magnitude.
OCHA Situation Report No. 1 27 Jan. 1999
Preliminary figures indicate 700 dead and 2,300 injured .
These figures may increase as the rescue operations continue.

Approximately 4,500 houses and 170 public buildings were destroyed.
There are no exact figures as to damage to the electric, water and gas supply systems, and there is as yet no evaluation of the damage caused to the road infrastructure.

AFP Report 26 Jan. 1999
At least 492 people died and more than 1,000 were injured in a massive earthquake Monday that shook five provinces in Colombia's Andes mountains, a radio station and local authorities reported.

Related Links



OCHA Situation Report No.5 Feb.03


Relief Web

AFP Report Jan.26 No.2

AFP Report Jan.26 No.1


OCHA Situation Report No.6 Feb.05

OCHA Situation Report No.3 Jan.28

AFP Report Jan.26 No.3

OCHA Situation Report No.8 Feb.19

OCHA Situation Report No. 6 5 Feb. 1999
Schools and hospitals also suffered a considerable amount of damage. In Armenia, it is calculated that approximately 35 per cent of the public schools have been destroyed. Several hospitals must be totally or partially demolished.

Yomiuri Shimbun 27 Jan 1999

OCHA Situation Report No.2 Jan.27

OCHA Situation Report No.1 Jan.26

Mainichi Shimbun 27 Jan 1999

OCHA Situation Report No.4 Jan.31

OCHA Situation Report No.7 Feb.12

Geographycal Data


[ERI Emergency Relief Information]

Japanese Red Cross Society invite a aubscription
(Red Cross international news)

AFP Report 26 Jan. 1999
Japan will send a 35-member team (mostly from the National Police Agency and the Fire Defense Agency) Tuesday to quake-struck Colombia in response to a request for help in rescue operations.