Pakistani authorities reported on Friday, August 28, that at least an additional 23 people have been killed due to continued flooding across many areas of Karachi. The majority of those killed have been due to roof collapses and drownings. The provincial government has declared Friday a public holiday to avoid residents having to attempt to commute across flooded roadways. The Chief Minister of Sindh province, Murad Ali Shah, ordered schools to be used to accommodate displaced families, whose homes had been damaged or were unreachable. Mobile communications networks have also been disrupted and much of Karachi is without power as efforts to restore utilities have been hampered by continued rain.
Pakistan's Meteorological Department recorded 9 inches (23 cm) of rain in Karachi on Thursday, the highest ever recorded in a single day. Rainfall in August is the highest since records began 89 years ago.
Recent monsoon rains and associated flooding have caused disruption and casualties throughout Pakistan over the previous weeks. Over 100 deaths have been reported, with 1000 homes damaged. Troops have been deployed in Karachi and other affected areas of the country to assist residents.
Further rainfall is expected throughout Pakistan over the near term. Disruption to transportation and business is to be expected while rains continue.
Pakistan's monsoon season from July through September regularly brings heavy rains, which at times can completely flood the Indus River Basin which runs roughly north to south through the country. Such flooding can prove catastrophic, resulting in casualties numbering in the thousands. In general, the country has yet to adequately address the monsoon flooding issue, and national flooding disasters remain common. These events, in addition to high death tolls, can also wipe out major infrastructure and render the country's vital road network impassable. More mountainous areas can experience severe landslides, which have a similar consequence for road networks there.
Those in Karachi are advised to monitor local weather reports, anticipate transportation disruptions, avoid areas directly affected by flooding, confirm road conditions before setting out, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities, including evacuation orders. Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters.
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