MANSEHRA/BUNER: At least 23 people were killed and many others suffered injuries in the aftermath of torrential rains in different parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Wednesday.
Officials said that most of the casualties were reported from upper parts of Hazara division, where at least 19 people lost their lives while four others died in Buner district of Malakand division.
Nine members of a family were buried under debris when a landslide hit their house in the Sarni area of remote Torghar district. Seven members of the family were killed and two children were rescued by locals.
Four members of a family were killed in another landslide incident in the Oghi area of Mansehra district. An injured woman was recovered from the rubble and rushed to a nearby hospital.
In another incident, an elderly man, Abdul Majid, and his wife were swept away by strong currents of Manoor Nullah in Balakot tehsil while they were trying to retrieve wooden beams from the stream.
Flash flood witnessed in rivers, streams; road network damaged
Later, the locals fished out the body of the man and search for his wife was still in progress.
In another incident, a former councilor, Umar Tawab, was killed and his wife and two sons were critically injured when a heavy boulder detached from a nearby mountain rolled down on their house in the Chamai area of Oghi tehsil. The injured were taken to hospital.
Two people were killed in separate incidents in Shinkiari and Lower Kohistan when their houses were hit by landslides.
A man, Attaullah Shah, drowned in the Kunhar River in the Talhat area of Garhi Habibullah.
Three people, including two girls, were killed in rain-related incidents in Battagram district.
Hazara division witnessed flash floods in Kunhar, Siren and Indus rivers and streams in Mansehra, Torghar, Upper Kohistan, Lower Kohistan and Kolai-Palas districts.
Karakoram Highway and many links roads were blocked for vehicular traffic following heavy landslides and communication and electricity supply infrastructure was damaged, interrupting the services in the division.
Meanwhile, three people were killed and four others were injured in rain-related incidents in Buner district. A landslide in the Alagram area killed a woman and her two children and injured four others.
Another woman was killed in a roof collapse incident Daggar tehsil.
In Swat district, which had witnessed torrential rains and swelling of rivers on Tuesday, bodies of two drowned persons were recovered from River Swat.
According to Rescue 1122, they have recovered the body of a woman who had drowned in Swat River in the Fatehpur area. The body of a man who had drowned in the Rahat Kot area was also recovered by rescuers.
In Shangla district, flood water swept away a suspension bridge in the Damorai area of Kana tehsil and washed away a kilometer-long stretch of Shahpur-Ajmeer road.
Locals said that several mini power stations, flour mills and fisheries points were also damaged by raging rivers.
Karakoram Highway, Bisham-Swat, Karora-Chakesar, Puran-Chawga, Karora-Shahpur and Alpuri-Puran roads and almost all links roads remained blocked for the third consecutive day, troubling the local commuters.
In Swabi, spillways of Kunal Dam were opened to control incoming floodwater but even then water started to flow over the main bridge. However, officials said that there was no threat to the dam.
Workers of Rescue 1122 saved eight people who were trapped in the middle of Indus River.
The rain spell that continued to lash Haripur intermittently for the third consecutive day caused flooding of rivers, streams and rainwater courses due to which a portion of Akhoon Bandi Bridge over River Daur was washed away. The damage to the bridge suspended vehicular traffic and severed the link of Akhoon Bandi, Magri and Mohrai villages with the city. Two motorcycle riders identified as Mohammad Ilyas and Salim were injured when they fell in the river while crossing the damaged portion of the bridge.
According to official sources the construction work of the bridge and Akhoon Bandi road was completed at a cost of Rs 100 million last year.
Three children were injured when the wall of a house collapsed during rains in the Mandharan Sedan area of Dera Ismail Khan, while hundreds of sheep were killed in other incidents on Wednesday.
Our correspondents from Swat, Haripur, Shangla, Swabi, Battagram and Dera Ismail Khan also contributed to this report
Published in Dawn, September 3rd, 2020