Three killed by lightning as rain lashes Balochistan

Published April 13, 2024
QUETTA: Motorists travel on a road amid rain showers, on Friday.—PPI
QUETTA: Motorists travel on a road amid rain showers, on Friday.—PPI

QUETTA: Three people were killed by lightning strikes and two others were injured during heavy torrential rain and thunderstorms, which lashed Quetta and 20 districts of Balochistan on Friday, prompting the provincial government to issue a high alert.

The new spell of heavy rain entered the province on Thursday night and continued in Quetta and other areas till late Friday night, affecting 20 of the 35 districts of Balochistan.

Two people were killed when lightning with heavy rain struck the Surab area of Kalat district. “Both the young men, identified as Farid Ahmed Raisani and Jabbar Ahmed Raisani, died on the spot while their colleague Ejaz Ahmed got injured in the lightning,” a police officer said, adding that Surab and other areas received heavy rain that caused flash flood affecting traffic on Quetta-Karachi highway.

Another incident of lightning was reported in Pishin district during heavy rain and hailstorm. The lightning struck a place in the Manzai area, a village on the outskirts of Pishin town. One man was killed and another injured.

Govt issues high alert to commissioners, PDMA; flash flood affects traffic on Quetta-Karachi highway; large number of mud houses collapse in Kech

Levies officials said the body and the injured were shifted to district hospital.

According to the officials, the downpour lashed districts Quetta, Ziarat, Pis­hin, Qila Abdullah, Chaman, Loralai, Bar­k­han, Dera Bugti, Kohlu, Sibi, Nasirabad, Gwadar, Turbat, Panjgur, Noshki, Zhob, Bolan, Chagai, Qila Saifullah, Harnai and many other areas.

Heavy rain with thunderstorms badly hit the Buleda area of Kech district where a large number of mud houses and boundary walls collapsed due to floodwater coming from the mountains. Seasonal streams and rivers were carrying floodwater as the catchment areas in the mountains have been receiving heavy rains for the past 24 hours.

Sources said flash floods badly affected traffic on national highways linking Balochistan with Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Some areas in northern Balochistan were cut off from their district headquarters due to flash floods.

The downstream areas of the provincial capital, which had received heavy rain since Friday morning, were also affected and other areas faced urban flooding, causing great difficulties for the travelers and people.

The floodwater entered many low-lying areas which damaged mud and makeshift houses, forcing the residents to move to safe places.

The provincial government issued a high alert to all deputy commissioners and divisional commissioners to take immediate steps for shifting the people to safe places in case of flood.

The Provincial Disaster Management Authority was also asked to remain alert for providing relief goods and launching rescue operations.

Rain forecast

According to the Pakistan Met Depart­ment, rain-windstorm/thunderstorm is likely in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Balochis­tan, upper Sindh, Islamabad, Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan, Kashmir and adjoining hilly areas over the next 24 hours.

Heavy fall/hailstorm is also likely at isolated places in upper KP, Kashmir, northeastern/southern Balochistan and Punjab, while snowfall is also expected on high mountains in Upper Khyber.

According to APP, the local administration on Friday advised the tourists to check weather updates before visiting Murree as the weather department has forecast rain there for the next three days.

Abdul Wahid Shahwani in Khuzdar, Behram Baloch in Gwadar and Ali Jan Mangi in Nasirabad also contributed to this report

Published in Dawn, April 13th, 2024

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