Three children, including four, die in Karachi due to ‘unexpected’ rain

KARACHI: Four people were killed in three rain-related incidents in different parts of the city on Wednesday as ‘unprecedented’ rains of the pre-monsoon season ravaged the metropolis, flooded roads and left several areas in the city. There was no electricity for hours.

The rains also broke the hot, humid and suffocating weather throughout the day and made the weather conditions pleasant.

The sudden heavy rain took the meteorological department officials by surprise as they did not expect the clouds to burst till evening.

“We had issued a long-range forecast about a week or two ago, mentioning the possibility of rain in Karachi on June 22,” said Director of the Meteorological Department, Sardar Muhammad Sarfaraz.

There was power outage in many areas for hours; 38 mm of rain in the city

“But the situation changed so fast over the weekend and the new models handled it that there is a chance of any rain in Karachi today” [Wednesday] Almost over,” he added: “However, it all started after 3 pm or 4 pm when a new system of pre-monsoon season developed in Bela and Sonmiani. [Balochistan], Usually such systems evaporate in a short time, but it moved to Karachi and turned into rain.

The rains mostly subsided by 8 pm in most parts of the city, except for reports of random and sporadic drizzle in some areas.

The highest rainfall of 38 mm was recorded in Nazimabad, followed by 22 mm at the airport.

In other observatories of the Meteorological Department, the number of rains remained below 10 mm. The Meteorological Department recorded winds of 49 knots per hour.

wall, ceiling collapse incidents

Although the amount of rain was low to moderate, it rained with thunder and strong winds, which intensified the rains to some extent.

Trees were uprooted in many parts of the city and weak structures also collapsed in some areas.

Two boys lost their lives in a similar incident in Jamshed Town.

Jamshed Town’s SP Captain Saddam Hussain said that some children were playing in the street in Mahmudabad’s Ashraf Colony when a wall collapsed, whose structure weakened due to rain. Four children were buried under the rubble. They were rescued and taken to Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center, where two of them were declared brought dead.

The deceased have been identified as 13-year-old Dilip Kumar and Piyosh Shambo. Two other boys, Rahul and Gatu, were injured.

A six-year-old boy named Sam also died when the roof of his house in Millat Town in Shah Faesal Colony collapsed.

A 50-year-old man, identified as Tariq, met the same fate at Gulshan-e-Aisha near Mausamyat when the roof of his house collapsed.

long standing power cut

On the other hand, the power supply crisis, which is testing the patience of Karachi residents, intensified after the rains.

Within minutes of the rain, there was power outage in almost all parts of the city.

Although the power utility, K-Electric, claimed that operations were almost back to normal after the rain had stopped, residents of dozens of areas in the city complained of power cuts.

“Of the 1,900 feeders, 1,650 are functioning normally,” a KE spokesperson claimed.

He said that the technical team of the Electricity Department is working round the clock to rectify the faults in the areas indicated by the consumers.

However, power supply could not be restored in many areas of the city till late night.

Earlier in the day, the power utility carried out unannounced load shedding in several parts of the city during the hot and humid weather. Even the students appearing for the Intermediate examination had to take their papers without electricity at various centres.

Several protests were also held against Kei in different parts of the city as angry residents and traders lit bonfires and raised slogans against Kei’s management.

While the city administration claimed to have controlled the drainage situation to a great extent by taking immediate action, many roads and streets remained submerged in rain water till late night.

Meanwhile, Karachi Administrator Barrister Murtaza Wahab said that effective planning before the rains and recent development work were the main reasons why the city did not see any adverse effects of the heavy rains.

“We have cleaned almost all drains, made new arrangements for district central where green line project had created problem and formed teams for all districts. That’s why we have mobilized all our manpower, deployed all available resources and are trying the best possible coordination with other institutions to meet the challenge.”

Published in Dawn, June 23, 2022