ABBOTTABAD: A 13-year-old boy drowned in a flooded nullah in Abbottabad as heavy rain damaged roads, houses, and dropped temperatures considerably across Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Friday.
They boy belonging to Allai area was crossing a bridge on the Karakoram Highway when he slipped into the nullah swelled by floods. Rescue 1122 personnel were still searching for the boy till filing of this report on Friday evening.
Almost all the main roads in Abbottabad city, including the KKH, were blocked for hours after rain water accumulated on them, resulting in traffic congestion.
The rain dropped the temperature and people complained about civic authorities’ failure to clear the choked drains, which resulted in rainwater flowing onto the roads and entering the houses.
The rainwater also came onto the road due to blockade of drains at the Bandkhoo Chowk, resulting in traffic jam. The rainwater also entered houses in Kehal, Sethi Masjid area, Lala Zar Colony, Tarkana, damaging household goods.
The traffic remained blocked for hours on the main toad at three points near Sethi Masjid, Sui Gas Office and in front of Ayub Medical Complex Hospital. The Abbottabad-Kakul Road was also blocked at Kala Pull as rainwater started overflowing on the bridge. Abbottabad-Muree Road was also closed for traffic at Jhugian and at Kala Pull for hours.
Blockade of the KKH halted vehicular traffic to Mansehra, Battagram, Kohistan and lower parts of Hazara division, including Haripur and Havelian.
In Landi Kotal, a man sustained injuries when a portion of his house collapsed due to excessive rain on Friday.
Khasadar officials said Israf Khan was shifted to a local hospital after receiving injuries when a boundary wall and adjacent rooms partially collapsed in Kandu Khel area during heavy rain coupled with hailstorm.
A van was also damaged in the incident.
Heavy rain and hailstorm also caused flash floods in local streams which caused traffic suspension on the main Peshawar-Torkham Highway for some time. Electricity supply to a major part of Landi Kotal was suspended due to tripping in the local grid station.
In Lakki Marwat, the rain coupled with strong winds played havoc in parts of the district, causing damage to road infrastructure and properties.
Rain dropped the temperature and made weather pleasant. The downpour caused damage to roads and bridges causing suspension of traffic between rural and urban localities.
Residents of rural localities were stuck in Lakki city because they could not proceed to their villages due to flood in water channels and heavy rain accompanied by strong winds and thunderstorm. A rural road linking dozens of villages and hamlets with Lakki city via Mela Mandrakhel and Zangikhel and a concrete bridge on it were badly damaged as a result of rain.
A resident said rain devastated a portion of road near Mela Shahabkhel village. He said the rural road was already in bad condition and the flashflood washed it away at several points.
The rain damaged the already potholed busy Tajazai-Darra Tang portion of Bannu-Mianwali Road. The downpour lashed Lakki city, disrupting normal life for several hours as rainwater accumulated on roads and in streets, causing distress to general public. In several urban localities sewage and filth from overflowing open drains mixed with rainwater came onto the streets.
The citizens blamed municipal administration for poor cleanliness and silting of sewerage drains. They demanded of the government to provide funds for rehabilitation of damaged roads and bridges.
Deputy commissioner Jehangir Azam Wazir, assistant commissioner Eid Nawaz Sherani and revenue department officials inspected rain and flood-damaged roads and bridges and got restored traffic between urban and rural localities.
In Battagram, rain lashed Battagram, Ajmera, Chappargram, Peshora, Shamlai, Batamori, Kuzabanda, Allai, Rashang, Bateela, Biari, Banna Khapero Soka and Chail Sar.
The rain started on Thursday morning and continued till filing of this report on Friday evening. No loss of human life or damage to property was reported.
Published in Dawn, May 25th, 2019