Extraordinary Circumstances Require Creative Solutions: Airboat Operations Commence in Malawi

09 April 2015

As air operations ceased, the airboat operations have commenced. An airboat has been brought into the Malawi Flood Relief special operation from South Africa, and is now transporting humanitarian passengers within flooded areas. Parts of the flood affected areas are still inaccessible by road, and only an airboat is able to reach them. Other boats have failed to be of use in this emergency due to the sand, silt, and low water volume levels that have left propellers damaged. An airboat, which is also known as a ‘fanboat’, has a flat bottom and is designed specifically for these types of conditions. The airboat is transporting humanitarians to the area now known as Makhanga Island, allowing them to reach those still in need of relief support. On April 2nd the airboat delivered its first passengers. Logistics Cluster partners transported have included MSF Belgium, IOM, UNOCHA, DODMA, GOAL Malawi and the Malawi Land Housing and Urban Development.

The airboat has been a welcomed addition to the Malawi Flood Relief, and is now allowing the humanitarian community to continue their assistance and work to support those populations greatly affected by the floods. Humanitarian passenger movement continues this week as more bookings are scheduled.