The recent monsoon spell in Sindh claimed 34 lives including 22 in Karachi while 12 people got injured in different rain-related incidents, a report by Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) said on Tuesday.
The fatalities also include seven children all of whom hailed from the metropolis.
The deaths in Karachi were caused by electrocution and wall and roof collapse incidents.
The highest number of fatalities due to torrential rains in the province, 9, were reported in Thatta district followed by six each in Karachi’s East and Korangi districts.
According to PDMA, three deaths each were reported in the Malir and South districts of Karachi and two each in Karachi’s Central district and Kharipur district.
The unabated rains at the beginning of the week also injured 12 people including six children, and three males and females each.
The downpours inflicted partial damage to nine houses in the mega city while two were fully damaged, according to the report.
Rains choke Karachi
Heavy rains and thundershowers as part of the second spell of monsoon rains battered Karachi throughout Sunday night and on Monday morning. The heavy rains have caused small dams and levees located on the edge of the city to overflow and flood surrounding areas. Inside the city, rivers and streets resemble rivers and underpasses have become ponds.
Only large trucks are able to move about in the city in limited numbers while smaller vehicles, including motorbikes and rickshaws are having difficulties in navigating inundated roads.
The heavy rains also resulted in power outages in most parts of the city with a reported 400 feeders of K-Electric either tripping or shut off for safety. The net result was that residents of the city were left without power amidst heavy rains.
However, at least two people were reportedly killed due to electrocution early on Monday morning in Garden’s Shoe Market areas.
There were also complaints of weak or poor internet signals causing disruptions to internet connectivity.
Meanwhile, satellite imagery showed that they eye of the storm, which caused the unprecedented rain, was almost over Karachi, suggesting that the city could yet see more rains.
Will Karachi see more rain tomorrow?
In an alert issued by the Sindh Provincial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA) on Monday evening, it said that per the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PDMA), there is a persistent low-pressure system hovering over the North Arabian Sea.
It warned that the rains could cause more urban flooding.
Rain in past 24 hours
Army, Rangers help drain water
To cope with the unexpected situation in the city, at least 388 teams comprising of civil administration, army troops and paramilitary Rangers helped with relief efforts throughout Karachi.
All the major nullahs including Gujjar, Orangi and Mehmoodabad were working at their optimum capacity as troops set up machines to pump out the water in flooded areas.
Section of ‘dangerous’ Lyari building collapses
A portion of a building in Lyari, which had been declared as dangerous, collapsed on Monday following heavy rains in the city.
The five-storey building had been inspected and deemed as dangerous by a technical team of the SBCA.
‘Hand Karachi over to center’
After torrential monsoon rains flooded the city yet again, the business community of the metropolis demanded that its administration should be handed over to the federal government.
In a statement issued by Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) President Muhammad Idrees Memon on Monday said federal government had reserved Rs1.1 trillion for a development package for the city, but no one knows what became of it.
SBCA to evacuate 421 ‘dangerous’ building following rains
Following heavy rains in the city, the Sindh Building Control Authority on Monday has directed to evacuate some 421 buildings which have been deemed dangerous.
“In the wake of recent rains, staying in dangerous buildings heightens the risk to life and property,” the SBCA official said.
Unusual rains in Karachi trip up Sindh govt’s monsoon plans
Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah on Monday said that the city had received an unusual amount of rains in the past 24 hours.
Shah said that the naturally native system of drains in Karachi were closed off over time.
“It is not easy to restore them,” he said, adding that building a drainage system that can handle the volume of water that the city received in the past four days would have an astronomical cost.
At least two men, who were riding a motorbike through the Shoe Market in Garden, died early on Monday morning, after being electrocuted.
Rescue officials said that they do not know how the two men were electrocuted.
They added that the deceased were identified as Asif And Hassan.
Underpasses filled with water
With choked drains, the Liaquatabad underpass turned into a large swimming pool as rainwater filled it to the brim.
It was a similar story in Clifton, where the underpass at Submarine Chowk was also closed for traffic after it filled with water.
Flooded city areas
The heavy rains inundated several parts of the city including the upscale Defence, Clifton, Sadar, PECHS, Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Gulistan-e-Johar and suburban Gulshan-e-Hadeed.
The Met Department said that DHA had cumulatively received around 72mm of rain. Similarly, Quaidabad had cumulatively received 76mm of rain.
Kemari was lashed by stormy rains with weather expert Javed Memon stating that it cumulatively received around 148mm of rain.
The heavy flow of water in the Korangi river washed away the Korangi Causeway.
Many parts of the city also lost power due to the rains.
A resident of Defence Housing Authority (DHA) said that the locality was inundated with water. Several areas including DHA Phase II Extension, Phase IV, Phase V, Khayaban-e-Shahbaz and commercial areas including Bukhari Commercial and Badar Commercial were flooded.
Even the street of Karachi Administrator Murtaza Wahab in DHA Phase V was completely flooded.
Residents of the low-income neighborhood Punjab Colony complained that water from drains had overflowed and is now flooding their houses.
They complained that no one from the city administration had come to their aid thus far.
Gujjar Nala overflows
One of the main storm water drains of the city, Gujjar Nala, on which the Supreme Court, the federal and provincial governments and city administration had worked to restore and remove encroachments from, has also filled with rainwater and is now overflowing.
People living in areas located along the Nala said that water overflowing from the drain has started to not only flood their areas but is now also entering their homes.
Water from Gujjar Nala flooded Nazimabad, Mujahid Colony, and Federal-C Area.
Some 400 K-Electric feeders trip
Following heavy rains in most parts of the city, residents of the city were also left without electric power.
Reports suggested that as many as 400 feeders of K-Electric out of 1,900 had tripped, depriving large swathes of the city of electric power.
Residents of Kemari, Sultanabad, Jackson Market, Lyari, Sadar, Garden, Jubilee, Old Golimaar, Pak Colony, Paposh Nagar, Nazimabad, Jahangirabad, Waheedabad, North Nazimabad, Buffer Zone, Shadman, Surjani Town, Gadap, North Karachi, New Karachi, Liaquatabad, Yasinabad, Godhra, parts of DHA, Clifton, Lines Area, Korangi, Landhi.
A K-Electric spokesperson said that work to restore power will commence as soon as the water recedes from flooded areas.
In this regard, the official said that teams were working to restore power in different parts of the Federal-B Area, North Karachi, Gulshan-e-Iqbal, and Gulistan-e-Johar.
Reiterating caution amid more forecast for rain, KE requested citizens to continue maintaining a safe distance from all poles and street lights, especially in areas with standing water after the recent heavy rain spell. Tying of sacrificial animals to poles must also be avoided for their safety.
KE’s spokesperson advised the use of call center 118 for electricity emergency complaints which are tackled on a priority basis.
Rains during the day had caused the Thado Dam, Lath Dam and other dams located in Gadap Town to overflow.
As a result, Khamiso Goth, Somar Goth and other adjoining villages near Memon Goth were flooded. Gadap Town and Gabol Town were also flooded.
Locals said that parts of the Super Highway were also flooded with rain waters, with several cars washed away while others drowned in the waters. Locals added that water was also heading towards Saadi Town fast.
Local police said that they had started an evacuation of the area.
Heavy rains also resulted in an increased flow of water in the Malir River, forcing the authorities to evacuate settlements along the river.
However, evacuations were affected after the high flow of water forced authorities to close the Malir Link Road.
The Pakistan Meteorological Department had on Sunday morning forecasted that the monsoon low-pressure system producing widespread heavy rains in Sindh had moved westward towards Balochistan and only light rain was expected in Karachi and other adjoining districts such as Badin, Thatta and Tharparkar in the next three days.
Moreover, the forecast stated that isolated rains and thunderstorms are expected in Dadu, Larkana, Jacobabad and Qambar Shahdadkot.
By early evening, it seemed that the predictions were accurate with little more than drizzles or trace rains being reported in most parts of the city. A record of rainfall in the city showed that by 5 pm, Nazimabad and Orangi Town had received rains, 27.4 millimetres (mm) and 22mm respectively (the latter in two spells of 16.4mm and 5.6mm respectively).
A few hours later, it started raining across the city, with Surjani Town receiving 12.4mm by 8 pm.
A further hour or so later, heavy rains were lashing central, eastern and southern parts of the city.
Before midnight, DHA had received around 52mm of rain Quaidabad received around 41mm of rain.