Jordan hit by new deadly floods

Clay Curtis
November 10, 2018

"Heavy rainfall in the Dabaa region (south of Amman) prompted the closure of the desert highway (leading to the south of the country) in both directions after the area was flooded", said Ghneimat.

Civil defence divers searched for five people whose auto was swept away by floods in the Madaba area, southwest of the capital, state news agency Petra said.

Ghunaimat says several people are missing and that searches are continuing.

In all, 11 people were killed, including two children and a diver who had been involved in rescue efforts, according to state media and Jordanian government spokeswoman Jumana Ghuneimat. The Jordanian military said that that it has sent soldiers and helicopters to assist in search operations.

A civil defence source told AFP that another child died in the Madaba area, also south of Amman, when the vehicle the child was in was submerged in water.

The latest deaths come after Oct 25 flash floods in the Dead Sea region of the kingdom killed 21 people, majority children on a school trip.

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State television said the waters had reached as high as four metres (13 feet) in parts of the red-rock ravine city of Petra and the adjacent Wadi Musa desert. Footage showed people on the city's main road trying to stay clear of the water.

Separately, Israel's public radio said contact had been lost with three Israeli tourists in southern Jordan. Trips to tourists sites have also been suspended.

Jordan's minister of water and irrigation, Raed Abu al-Saoud, said on Saturday that the country's 14 main dams had filled up by some 26 percent of full capacity in the past 48 hours because of the torrential rains.

Ghneimat urged residents of the stricken areas and in low-lying regions to evacuate their homes, saying that heavy rains were expected to continue to lash Jordan Friday night and Saturday.

An excavator is partially submerged in a stream after rain storms unleashed flash floods, in Madaba city, near Amman, Jordan, November 10, 2018.

Friday's floods came two weeks after 21 people, including middle school students, were killed in flash floods near the Dead Sea.

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