Heavy rain has caused flash flooding and landslides in areas of Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan over the last few days. Parts of Kandahar Province in Afghanistan recorded around half its annual rainfall in 30 hours. Parts of Pakistan have also been affected by severe snowstorms.
According to media reports, as many as 50 people have died as a result of flooding, landslides or collapsing buildings across the 3 countries.
Heavy rain in Afghanistan has caused flooding in the provinces of Kandahar, Kunar, Zabul, Nimroz, Hirat and Farah, according to a report by the United Nations. Infrastructure as well as hundreds of homes have been damaged.
Heavy rain fell in Kandahar Province from 01 March, 2019. UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) said that flooding affected Kandahar city and the districts of Zheri, Dand, Damand, Arghandab, Spinboldak, and Takhtapu.
Around 97 mm of rain fell in 30 hours, which is the equivalent of about half the annual rainfall for the area. As recently as January parts of the province were suffering from drought.
Initial reports suggested that as many as 20 people had died in Kandahar Province when their homes collapsed or the vehicles they were traveling in were swept away. A further 10 people were reported as missing and it was feared that up to 2,000 homes have been damaged. Schools and public buildings have suffered damage.
Since then updated reports have confirmed 8 fatalities, with 18 people injured and 10 missing. More than 1,000 people stranded by the flood waters have been rescued by the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). In Arghandab district alone, an estimated 1,500 families have been affected by the floods; the majority of the affected people are from the Kochi (nomadic) community.
In Farah Province, local media reports say that 85% of Farah City is underwater following heavy rains on 02 March, 2019.
UNOCHA say that the districts of Korji, Qala-e-Ghulam Sediq, Police Districts 1, 2, 3, Hanif Abad, Shaikh Abad and Anar Dara in the province have also been severely affected by flooding. Roads have been blocked by flood water causing severe transport problems. Telecommunications are down, hampering communication between flood-affected people, local authorities and humanitarian partners.
A total of 500 families have been displaced in the province, according to UNOCHA, while ANSF are carrying out rescue operations to relocate people trapped by the flood waters.
In Hirat, flooding has been reported in Shindand, Zawol, Zirkoh, Pashtunzarghun and Obe districts. In Shindand 200 houses have reportedly been swept away. UNOCHA said that the full extent of the damage in other affected districts is still being assessed.
Military have carried out large-scale rescue operations in Balochistan province after flash flooding. Meanwhile as many as 14 people have reportedly died in severe weather in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. This is the second spate of deadly flash flooding within two weeks in the two provinces.
Local media report that as many as 10 people have died after heavy snowfall and flooding in parts of Balochistan province. Around 1,500 stranded families have been rescued by military in Lasbela and Qillah Abdulla districts. Chagai district has also been severely affected. Pakistan military have distributed relief items and food rations to 3,500 families in the rain-affected areas.
Local media also said that heavy rain and snow had caused landslides and flooding in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, leaving as many as 12 people dead and 14 injured. The affected districts include Khyber, North Waziristan, South Waziristan, Charsadda and Tank.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) said that bad weather caused damage to 31 houses in different parts of the province.
Meanwhile local media in Iran report that 3 border guards have died in flash flooding in Sistan and Baluchestan Province, which borders Pakistan’s Balochistan Province.
The guards were killed after they became trapped in floodwaters while performing patrol duty near Mirjaveh in Mirjaveh County. Mirjaveh is situated around 500km south west of Kandahar in Afghanistan.
Meanwhile the Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS) said it has offered relief services to over 11,700 people and travellers who needed help due to snowfall and flooding from 27 February. IRCS said that as many as 163 towns, villages and nomad groups in 25 provinces have been affected.
په کندهار کي د اورښتونو او سيلابونو له کبله ٧ کسانو ژوند له لاسه ورکړى او يو شمېر نور ټپیان شوي دي.
خلک وايي، چي د طبیعي پېښو پر وړاندي دولت هيڅ چمتوالى نلري؛ نو، ځکه زيانونه ورته اوښتي دي. pic.twitter.com/AbWgBeZ3zx
— Ariana News (@ArianaNews_) March 2, 2019
#Afghanistan National Army evacuated those affected by floods in Punjwaye district of #Kandahar province. Taking timely steps, the government has set up shelters for thes ppl in Kandahar city.
The man (with a winter hat talking to a woman) is deputy governor Abdul Hanan Munib. pic.twitter.com/3F6qhk4P8R
— Malali Bashir (@MalaliBashir) March 2, 2019
Pak security forces busy in rescue operations in and around flood hit Turbat, Balochistan pic.twitter.com/7REZ3Z5VkB
— Khalid khi (@khalid_pk) March 3, 2019
Three #Iranian border guards were killed in heavy rain and flood that hit the city of #Mirjaveh in Iran’s southeastern province of #Sistan and #Baluchestan pic.twitter.com/YVHHDhtLYD
— Tasnim News Agency (@Tasnimnews_EN) March 3, 2019