Environment

Major flash floods hit northern Tunisia again


At least 5 people have been killed and two are still missing after devastating flash floods hit parts of Tunisia on October 17 and 18, 2018. Parts of the country recorded more rain in just 24 hours than they usually receive during the entire month of October. The resulting major flash flooding claimed lives of at least 5 people. Two are still missing, as of late October 18. The event comes less than a month after 5 people lost their lives in the northeastern city of Nabeul.

The latest wave of flash flooding affected the governorates of Tunis, Sidi Bouzid, Kef, Kasserine and Siliana. 

195 mm (7.7 inches) of rain was recorded in Nabeul, 140 mm (5.5 inches) in Zaghouan, 130 mm (5.1 inches) in parts of Kasserine, Tunis-Cartage received 108.4 (4.2 inches), and Sidi Bouzid 85 mm (3.3 inches).

Average October rainfall in Tunis-Cartage is 65.5 mm (2.6 inches). Country’s mean total average for October is 70 mm (2.7 inches). The annual average is 520 mm (20.4 inches), most of which falls from October to April.

The floods in some parts of the region rose to nearly 2 m (6.5 feet) overnight, devastating homes and shops, and forcing some of the residents to escape to their roofs.

“I slept with my three children on a floor under construction above my own home, exposed to the wind and the rain,” one resident said, as reported by AFP. “I’ve lost everything”.

Schools have been closed across the affected region and transport severely disrupted.

Hydro-electric power facilities along rivers have been severely damaged.

At least 5 people have been killed and 2 are still missing, the interior ministry said Thursday.


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Some areas of the country, like the northeastern city of Nabeul, received as much as 200 mm (7.9 inches) of rain on September 22, 2018, according to information provided by the National Institute of Meteorology. Up to 225 mm (8.85 inches) was measured in Beni Khalled.

This is the heaviest rainfall to hit the region in such a short period since 1995 when precise measurements began.

Featured image credit: Agate Meteo





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