10 people killed as flooding hits Karachi

Days of torrential rain in southern Pakistan cause major disruption.

    At least 10 people have been killed after torrential rain lashed Karachi.

    Fifty-six millimetres of rain was reported in the Gulshan-e-Iqbal area of the city on Saturday, which was enough to bring traffic to a standstill and cause widespread flooding.

    Most of the people who died were killed by electrocution or were crushed when walls or buildings collapsed on them, according to reports by the AP news agency.

    The inundation left 45 percent of the city without power. In turn, the lack of electricity affected the pumping stations, disrupting the water supply to the city.

    Other parts of the Sindh province have also seen torrential rain in the last few days. Thatta was hit by 116mm of rain in three days, and Hyderabad was swamped when 77mm of rain fell in just one day.

    Usually, July is the wettest month of the year in Karachi, with the city expecting 60mm of rain throughout the month. This year, however, July was unusually dry, with only 2.5mm reported.

    The provinces of Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa also experienced well below average rainfall in July.

    August has started off in a very different vein. Some parts of Sindh have already received more rain in the first week of the month than is expected in the entire month.

    The sudden arrival of the summer rains is due to an area of low pressure that has developed over the southwestern province of Balochistan. This has encouraged moisture from the monsoon to move north into southern parts of Pakistan, and the rain is likely to continue over the next few days.

    Monsoon showers are also likely to affect northern parts of the country.

    Some of the rain is expected to be heavy and is likely to lead to more flooding. Landslides are also a possibility in the mountainous north.

    Additional reporting by Steff Gaulter.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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