As flash floods triggered by incessant rains continue to swamp Southern Punjab and parts of Balochistan, the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) claimed on Wednesday that no more losses were reported from any part of the country.
The NDMA issued no fresh flooding advisory, but the Meteorological Department predicted scattered thunderstorm and rain with isolated heavy rainfall in parts of Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan, South Punjab, Balochistan, Gujranwala, Faisalabad, Sargodha, Rawalpindi Divisions and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (K-P) in the next 24 hours.
“There is no imminent threat of serious flooding or hill torrents. However, poor drainage systems in some of the urban centres could create problems in case of a heavy rainfall,” said NDMA spokesperson Brig Kamran Zia. He added that people from the areas prone to flash floods have already been shifted to higher ground.
“Very heavy to heavy rain was recorded in areas of Punjab, Kashmir, Islamabad and parts of Balochistan,” the Met Department said. “The highest level of rain was recorded in Gujrat (136mm). The other areas that recorded very high rain included Dratian (108mm), Balakot (104mm), Islamabad (98mm), Malamjabba (68mm), Muzaffarabad (53mm), Tarbela (37mm) and Mangla (28mm).”
According to the Met Office’s Flood Forecasting Division, the River Indus and Chashma and Taunsa barrages are in medium flood. “The River Indus at Tarbela, Kalabagh and Gudu, the River Kabul at Nowshera, the River Chanab at Khanki and Qadirabad are in low flood,” it said.
Medium-level hill torrent passed through Taunsa Tehsil of Dera Ghazi Khan district on Wednesday, swamping nearby villages and forcing residents to migrate to higher ground. However, no loss of life was reported. Floodwater also entered 45 more villages of Naseerabad district of Balochistan. Standing crops in these areas were damaged but no loss of life was reported, according to the NDMA.
Eighty-four people have died in flash floods since the start of the monsoon season. The highest numbers of fatalities were reported in Sindh where 22 people died, 18 people were killed in Balochistan, 15 in Punjab and 14 in K-P.
The NDMA data shows that 81, 674 people were affected by the floods while standing crops on 135,076 acres of farmlands were damaged. Similarly, 2,533 houses were destroyed and 1,782 were damaged. In all, 333 villages were affected where the authority has established 15 relief camps manned by 2,607 people.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 8th, 2013.