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Disruption to Alouk Water Station - Flash Update #01

HIGHLIGHTS
• On 12 April, the Alouk water station in Al-Hasakeh Governorate stopped functioning, reportedly due to a fire at the Derbasiyah electricity substation which serves as the main source of electricity for Alouk.

• While the situation remains fluid and efforts are ongoing to restore supply, at the time of writing, access to water has been disrupted for over two weeks affecting up to one million people, including directly impacting water supply to approximately 460,000 people in Al-Hasakeh and Tal Tamer cities, in

addition to over 70,000 people in Al Hol and other camps and settlements in the area.

• The current disruption at Alouk is the 23rd incident OCHA has recorded since November 2019.

• On 13 April, General Electricity Company of Al-Hasakeh technical teams commenced repairs at Derbasiyah electricity substation. The power station resumed operations albeit at a lower capacity which, in addition to illegal power connections on the Derbasiyah line, did not provide adequate power for the water station.

• On 18 April, General Electricity Company technicians were reportedly unable to access the power station.

• Later, on 24 April, following repairs on the electrical grid, Alouk water station started operating at a lower capacity, restoring supply to Tel Tamer sub-district, however, as of 27 April pumping remains insufficient to reach the majority of the population the station ordinarily serves, including Al-Hasakeh city.

• WASH partners have activated emergency water trucking deliveries of approximately 3,231m3/day. This is however insufficient to cover needs; at full production capacity, Alouk water station supplies approximately 4,000m3/hour.

• Humanitarian partners continue to advocate for qualified technical teams, including those from the Department of Water Resources, to have regular, unhindered and safe access to Alouk water station and Derbasiyah electricity substation for necessary repairs and maintenance to enable civilians to have sufficient and reliable access to clean, safe water. Work is also ongoing to identify alternative, sustainable solutions to address Al-Hasakeh’s chronic water shortages.

SITUATION OVERVIEW
Alouk water station is a critical source of water in north-east Syria. While this latest disruption is the second recorded by OCHA in 2021, it is the 23rd recorded time the station has had operations suspended since November 2019. These disruptions have ranged from a few days to over a few weeks; directly or indirectly affecting approximately one million civilians in Al-Hasakeh Governorate, including over 70,000 people living in camps and informal settlements, including Al Hol, Areesha, Al-Tala‘e’ and Tweina. It is estimated that these disruptions cumulatively amount to over 100 days where residents received no water from Alouk and were forced to rely on emergency water trucking and/or other sources of potentially unsafe water, including local wells.

Operation(s)/ Webspace(s): 
Organization(s): 
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Original Publication Date: 
28 Apr 2021
Document type: 
Reports
Disaster(s)/Emergency: 
Syria: Crisis 2011-2021