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20 Apr 2020 | 05:13 AM UTC

Afghanistan: Ongoing flash floods in northern and western provinces kill 47 as of April 20 /update 1

Ongoing flash floods in northern and western provinces kill 47 as of April 20; expect associated disruptions



As of Monday, April 20, flash floods and landslides, ongoing since heavy rains hit northern and western provinces on Saturday, March 21, have killed at least 47 people. Over 600 homes have collapsed, another 600 have been damaged, and 5000 families have been affected, with melting snow in the mountains contributing to the floods' severity. The most severely affected provinces include Badakhshan, Badghis, Baghlan, Farah, Faryab, Parwan, and Takhar. The Afghanistan Meteorological Department expects heavy rains to continue over some northern provinces until at least Wednesday, April 22.

Local sources indicate the flooding is likely to increase the spread of water-borne diseases as water sources become contaminated, further stretching the Afghan health system as it is overwhelmed by the spreading coronavirus disease (COVID-19).


Individuals in northern and western Afghanistan are advised to monitor local weather reports, avoid areas affected by flooding, anticipate lingering transportation, and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities.

Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters; 15 cm (6 in) of running water is enough to knock over an adult. Floodwater may contain wastewater or chemical products; all items having come into contact with the water should be disinfected and all foodstuffs discarded.

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