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Impact and adaptation to flood: A focus on water supply, sanitation and health problems of rural community in Bangladesh

Annya Chanda Shimi (Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, Dhaka, Bangladesh)
Gulsan Ara Parvin (Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan)
Chaitee Biswas (Capital Development Authority (Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha), Dhaka, Bangladesh)
Rajib Shaw (Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan)

Disaster Prevention and Management

ISSN: 0965-3562

Article publication date: 22 June 2010

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper intends to examine the impacts of flood on water supply and sanitation condition along with flood induced health problems in a rural community of Bangladesh. It also aims to explore a rural community's adaptation approaches to flood.

Design/methodology/approach

This research relied on intensive field investigation where 120 households from different villages were selected randomly for questionnaire survey. Sampling was taken from different villages which were the most badly flood affected areas during all previous floods of Bangladesh. Field investigation was conducted in January 2007.

Findings

Flood is a common feature of the study area. Water supply and sanitation condition become severely disrupted during flood when it embraces various water borne diseases. During every flood about two‐thirds of the tube‐wells and all toilets become unusable. As an adaptation approach tube‐wells have been either placed on an elevated base or raised with an extra pipe. But owing to using hanging latrines or a boat and defecating directly into water bodies most people pollute those water bodies. Although majority of the people suffer from different water borne diseases no remarkable adaptation approach is followed. Few people store any emergency medicine before a flood and sometimes take treatment from local rural doctors.

Practical implications

By highlighting the nature and extent of impacts of flood on water supply, sanitation and health condition along with the adaptation this study urges the need for special attention and improvement of these sectors of rural Bangladesh under flood management programs of government and non‐government organizations.

Originality/value

This paper facilitates the understanding of the impact of floods on water supply, sanitation and health condition of rural people, which are not well addressed. At the same time its helps to learn lessons from their adaptation to flood.

Keywords

Citation

Chanda Shimi, A., Ara Parvin, G., Biswas, C. and Shaw, R. (2010), "Impact and adaptation to flood: A focus on water supply, sanitation and health problems of rural community in Bangladesh", Disaster Prevention and Management, Vol. 19 No. 3, pp. 298-313. https://doi.org/10.1108/09653561011052484

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited