CHITRAL/haripur/Lakki Marwat: Torrential rains triggered flash floods here early on Thursday destroying roads, suspension bridges, houses and crops in Sheshi Koh, Lot Koh, Yarkhoon and Bumburate valleys.
Sher Jahan of Garam Chashma area told Dawn that roads, irrigation channels and water schemes were washed away by floodwaters in Narkoret, Overik, Munoor, Beshqer and Kandujal villages.
He said the calamity had threatened potato and maize crops, vegetable plants and fruit trees.
The resident said the Garam Chashma Bazaar and the buildings of the Government Higher Secondary School and a private bank had partially submerged in floodwater.
The flash floods also destroyed two kilometers section of a road leading to Madak Lusht tourist resort in Sheshi Koh valley bordering Swat district.
Traffic jam reported on Haripur road damaged by downpour
The residents said the calamity had virtually confined them to homes.
Floodwaters destroyed the suspension bridge connecting Khuzh village with the main road in Yarkhoon valley of Upper Chitral district. The local river was in high flood due to the abnormal melting of Chiantar glacier in Baroghil valley.
The flash floods also hit Brep, adjacent villages in Yarkhoon and many in Terich valley.
Meanwhile, the administration has alerted the residents to the possibility of flash floods in light of a warning by the Provincial Disaster Management Authority regarding the anticipated explosion of glacial lakes in Golen, Booni, Reshun, Arkari and Madak Lusht areas.
Additional DC (relief) Abdul Wali Khan told Dawn thatthe early warning systemhad been installed in Golen valley to ring out alarm bells in case of glacial lake outbursts for people to move to safer places.
He said Golen was the most vulnerable area in the region to glacial lake outburst flood and extensive arrangements had been made to minimise damage to public life and property in case of disaster.
Meanwhile, heavy rain damaged Sirikot Bypass Road in Haripur hampering traffic.
The residents told Dawn on Thursday that the road was reconstructed a few months ago but the use of substandard material led to its destruction at several places during heavy rainfall on Tuesday and Wednesday.
They said they struggled to reach Sirikot and Ghazi up to Tarbela dam on one hand and Haripur district headquarters on the other.
Meanwhile, the Lakki Marwat administration has claimed that it has effectively prevented damage by rain-induced flash floods in Lakki city, Naurang, Betanni tribal subdivision and other parts of the district.
“The flood control strategy was implemented in letter and spirit that helped protect vulnerable areas, including Lakki city, from flash floods,” an official told Dawn on Thursday.
Published in Dawn, July 30th, 2021