Nepal – Dozens Dead After Torrential Rain Triggers Floods and Landslides

Torrential rain from 10 August, 2017, has caused widespread flooding and landslides in Nepal.

Figures from Nepal’s Ministry of Home Affairs (MoHA) say more than 30 districts of the country have suffered damages as a result of heavy rain, flooding or landslides. Over 13,000 families have been affected, with around 1,500 families displaced.

As of 14 August, 62 fatalities had been reported, with a further 36 people injured and 27 missing.

Some of the deadliest floods were in Rajpur, Rautahat, where 6 died on 13 August and Itahari, Sunsari, where 7 died in flood waters on 12 August.

Four people died in a landslide on 12 August in Kamalamai, Sindhuli district and a further three fatalities occurred after a landslide in Gurwakot, Surkhet on 13 August.

According to UN figures, 305 homes have been destroyed. A school in Dang district has also collapsed. MoHA report that 13,018 houses have been severely damaged.

Flooding in Bhajani, Kailali district on 13 August damaged 2,500 homes. A further 1,200 were damage by flooding in Jhapa, Jhapa district and 1,150 in Bode Barsain, Saptari district, the previous day.

Transportation has also been badly affected, with dozens of roads blocked. Biratnagar Airport was closed after the runway was submerged under flood water.

Military and police have been deployed to carry out rescues and evacuations.

According to UN figures, the worst hit districts (most families affected) include Bardiya, Banke, Dang, Chitawan, Lalitpur, Makawanpur, Bara, Sarlahi, Mahottari, Sindhuli, Dhanusha, Siraha, Saptari and Panchthar.

Nepal monsoon floods, and landslides, August 2017. Image: UN

Rivers

According to figures from Department of Hydrology and Meteorology, Government of Nepal, the Kankai river at Mainachuli reached 5.74 metres on 11 August, surpassing the danger level of 4.20 metres.

On 13 August, the Babai river at Chepang reached 8.54 metres, where danger level is 6.10 metres. On the same day the Babai river at Bhada bridge reached 9.30 metres where the danger mark is 8 metres.

Rainfall

Nepal’s Meteorological Forecasting Division report that 222 mm of rain was recorded in 24 hours, 13 to 14 August in Bhairahawa.

Below are figures from Ogimet for a 24 hour period:

12 to 13 August

  • Dang 167.4 mm
  • Simra Airport 173.2 mm

10 to 11 August

  • Pokhara Airport – 85.6 mm
  • Bhairahawa Airport – 76.1 mm
  • Simra Airport – 126.0 mm