Rains wreak havoc in KP, Balochistan

Casualties reported as roofs of structures cave in and  floods sweep away vehicles Climate Minister Sherry Rehman warns of floods across country in the aftermath of downpours

Pre-monsoon rains wreaked havoc in various parts of Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, causing floods and roofs to collapse, damaging crops and properties and leaving several people dead and injured, according to the provinces’ disaster management authorities.

In the Sonari area of Balochistan’s Kohlu, the road connecting the locality to Quetta was swept away by flooding and several bridges were damaged, the Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) said in a statement on Tuesday. Floods had also swept away electricity poles in Kohlu and the downpour in Barkhan damaged crops. Many parts of the province continue to experience rain, with reports of heavy showers in Sibi, Kohlu, Ziarat, Quetta, Chaman, Harnai, Loralai, Sherani, Musa Khel, Barkhan and Zhob, the PDMA said. Thunderstorms and gusty winds have been reported in Sibi, Kohlu, Ziarat, Quetta, Harnai, Loralai, Sherani, Musakhel, Barkhan, Zhob, Kalat and Khuzdar, it added. In Sibi, the PDMA said four women and a man were killed when raging torrents had swept away a truck on Sunday.

According to Levies, the tragedy had taken place when the truck tried to cross the Beji River despite heavy floods. “The truck was carrying about 25 people and their livestock,” said Bahadur Khan, who survived the accident. Citing the Met Office, the PDMA statement said the current spell of pre-monsoon rains in Balochistan was expected to continue until today (Wednesday).

Meanwhile, the PDMA in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa issued a report, stating that three children were injured in rain-related incidents in the province over the past 24 hours.

According to the report, the children were injured when the roof of a house collapsed due to heavy rain in the province’s Dera Ismail Khan area. The PDMA said the flow of rivers was normal in the province, but a glacial lake outburst flooding was reported in the remote Ishperu Gol area of Terich village of Upper Chitral that damaged a 50kV micro-hydel power station in the area. Two people also died and three injured in rain-related incidents during the last 24 hours. According to reports, a person drowned in a car due to flash flood in Wanda Haibati, while another died due to a wall collapse in Wanda Khaliq Shah of DI Khan.

Climate Change Minister Sherry Rehman said large parts of the country could face floods in the aftermath of torrential rains in the coming days, adding that there was a “clear risk of flooding in Karachi, Lahore, Multan, Peshawar, Islamabad and other big cities”. The warning from the minister came in a statement that also carried directives for relevant federal and provincial departments to take measures to deal with any potential disasters.