Thursday, January 21, 2010

Rains, Landslides, Roadblocks Cut-Off Cochabamba

Heavey rains have damaged many roads in most of Bolivia's low-lying Amazonian areas, and the city of
Cochabamba is experiencing serious lack of road access. Bus travel between Cochabamba and Santa Cruz has been suspended due to extensive damage to the roadway in the steep cloud forest El Sillar area. This is a common occurance during the rainy season in areas where this main trunk road winds through slippery jungled mountains and landslides in El Sillar cut off Cochabamba from Santa Cruz almost every year. Local travel in Cochabamba was also suspended for eight hours yesterday due to a neighborhood road block in the large Blanco Galindo avenue that leaves towards La Paz. Travel from Cochabamba to Sucre is also cut off due to flooding around the Arce bridge. 11 thousand people are believed to be effected by extensive flooding after an especially heavey 14-hour deluge yesterday in tropical and cloud forest regions. In Bulo Bulo an overflow of the Ichilo River has caused 9 people to remain trapped on the roofs of their houses. In Puerto Villaroel there are 500 familias in danger from flooding and 600 familias in Entre Rios. So far the national guard and emergency services have helped over 6,000 people but this is believed to be insufficient.The Naval Hydrographic Service (SNHN) gave an evacuation warning for anyone living in a lowlying Amazonian region to flee to higher ground as floods are likely to continue.


  1. I am maintaining an inventory of landslide events. Do you have any additional information about the location and/or date of the landslides in the areas you have described? Thank you very much.

  2. Hi Dalia,

    Landslides are very common during the Bolivian rainy season (Dec-May) and probably several occur somewhere in the country every week. Is your project global in scope? In this particular case the article mentions landslides in a region of the Cochabamba-Santa Cruz road called El Sillar. El Sillar is a very mountainous cloud forest region and it's famous for landslides that cut off this major road. The article mentions landslides at Km 105, 109 and 111 (From COchabamba), so I think it's safe to say that at least 3 landslides occurred. The date of the actual events was Wednesday, Jan 20th.

  3. Thank you for this information. My inventory is global in scope, but I find it difficult to obtain landslide reports from many areas in South America. You can find the landslide inventory for 2003, 2007 and 2008 at; however, this clearly represents a lower threshold on the total number of landslides globally.

    Again, thank you for this information.