9 killed as monsoon rain lashes Quetta

News Report & Our Correspondent
Wednesday, Jul 06, 2022

QUETTA/ISLAMABAD: At least nine people, including women and children, were killed as heavy rains lashed the provincial capital of Balochistan and triggered flash floods in several places, a provincial disaster management agency said Tuesday.

Seven people died when the roofs of their homes collapsed in the downpour overnight in Quetta, the agency said. Two bodies swept away by floods were found near a dam Tuesday. There were fears the death toll could be higher as several people were still missing. Rescuers used boats to search for those missing, foreign media reported.

Authorities say the latest spell of torrential rains, which started on Monday and continued on Tuesday, also damaged dozens of homes in the province. Since June, rains have killed 38 people and damaged more than 200 homes across Pakistan, including in Balochistan, where over the weekend, a passenger bus skidded off a road and fell into a deep ravine amid heavy rain, killing 20 people. Floods triggered by seasonal monsoon rains wreak havoc in Pakistan every year, killing dozens.

A heavy rainfall in twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad sent the alarm bells ringing for locals to shift to some other areas. Fear and panic gripped the residents of the garrison city after the water level of Nullah Leh went as high as 20 feet at Katarian while it was 18 feet at Gawalmandi. The downpour started at around 8:10am and continued for one and a half hours, raising the flow of water in the main drainage canal of the city near New Katarian, where Leh enters Rawalpindi.

According to Rescue 1122, a man fell into Nullah Leh at Chakla Pull. Rescue teams were trying to find out his body till the filing of this report. Similarly, four children were stuck in Korang Nullah where police and other rescue teams rescued them.

The district administration has declared Rain Emergency in Rawalpindi and warned people to stay at home during heavy rainfalls. Meanwhile, the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) has forecast more monsoon rains in the country during this week that would trigger landslides and flash flooding in vulnerable areas. The monsoon currents penetrating in the country may continue during the next 24-48 hours. The monsoon currents are likely to further strengthen from the weekend. Rain-wind/thundershower is expected in Islamabad, Kashmir, Swat, Mansehra, Kohistan, Abbottabad, Haripur, Peshawar, Mardan, Swabi, Nowshera, Rawalpindi, Murree, Attock, Chakwal, Jhelum, Sargodha, Hafizabad, Mandi Bahauddin, Sialkot, Narowal, Mianwali, Bhakkar, Lahore, Gujranwala, Gujrat, Sheikhupura, Faisalabad, Jhang, Toba Tek Singh and Okara.

Heavy falls are also expected in Kashmir, Peshawar, Mardan, Kurram, Dir, Mansehra, Abbottabad, Islamabad, Potohar region, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Hafizabad, Lahore, Faisalabad and Sargodha. Rain-wind/thundershower with isolated heavy falls is expected in Zhob, Ziarat, Barkhan, Loralai, Kohlu, Quetta, Kalat, Khuzdar, Lasbela, Naseerabad, Sibbi, Panjgur, Turbat, Pasni, Gwadar, Ormara, Kech, Awaran, Kharan, Mirpurkhas, Dadu, Karachi, Thatta and Badin. The Met office warned that heavy falls might create urban flooding in Rawalpindi/Islamabad, Faisalabad, Lahore, Gujranwala and Sialkot. Flash flooding is also expected in local Nullahs of Islamabad/Rawalpindi, Kashmir, Khuzdar, Lasbela, Naseerabad, Gwadar, Awaran, Barkhan, Bolan and Kohlu during the forecast period. The rainfall may trigger landslides in Kashmir, Galliyat, Murree, Chillas, Diamir, Gilgit, Hunza, Astore and Skardu.