Four more die in Lahore as monsoon spell hovers over country

LAHORE (Monitoring Desk): Four people were killed and a child was injured after the roof of their house in the provincial capital collapsed as torrential rains continued lashing the country on Thursday. 

Lahore experienced heavy downpour just a day after a 30-year-old record was broken as the city’s Lakshmi Chowk locality witnessed 291mm of rain in just 10 hours, which resulted in seven deaths.

On Wednesday, the Met Office again warned that heavy rain may cause urban flooding from July 6 to 8 in the low-lying areas of Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Attock, Gujranwala, Lahore, Sialkot, Sahiwal, Toba Tek Singh, Multan, Bahawalpur, Bahawalnagar Okara, Kohat, Peshawar, Bannu, Karak and DI Khan. 

It can also cause landslides in the vulnerable/ hilly areas of Murree, Galliyat, Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Meanwhile, there is also a threat of flash flooding in hill torrents and streams of Kashmir, DG Khan, Kohlu, Sibbi, Barkhan, Zhob, Loralai, Qilla Saifullah and Musakhel during the said period.

The latest deaths in Lahore were reported from Chungi Amar Sidhu area where the rescue workers removed the bodies from the rubble and rushed the injured child to the nearby General Hospital.

Separately, 14 people were wounded – two of them in a serious condition – and shifted to the Ganga Ram Hospital as the wall of a hospital at Mozang collapsed. 

According to the official data, the highest amount of rain 73mm in Lahore was recorded at Nishter Town followed by Johar Town 64mm, Gulshan-e-Ravi 48mm and Paniwla Talab 43mm.    

Meanwhile, the heavier-than-usual rainfall, especially in Lahore, is a result of interaction between the cold winds in the shape of a westerly affecting the upper parts of Pakistan and the moist currents from Arabian Sea as well as the Bay of Bengal reaching the upper and central region.

According to the Met Office, rain-wind/thundershower is expected in Kashmir, Gilgit-Baltistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Islamabad, Punjab, east/northeast Balochistan and eastern/upper Sindh during the next 48 hours.

Moreover, extreme weather events – isolated heavy rainfall – can also hit Punjab, Islamabad, Kashmir, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and northeast Balochistan during this period.

Chenab flooding forecast 

At the same time, the Flood Forecasting Division issued a warning which says heavy rainfall in the catchment areas may lead to a very high to exceptionally high level of flooding in the Chenab from July 8 to 10. However, the flood situation in Ravi and Sutlej will depend upon releases from India. 

Meanwhile, the latest satellite images [around 1:30am] showed that the upper and northeastern parts of Punjab and Kashmir as well as the adjoining areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are covered by clouds. Similarly, clouds are also developing over northeast of Balochistan.