Rivers in 10 districts flowing above danger level

Published: July 12, 2019 16:13:14 | Updated: July 13, 2019 12:36:03

Excessive rain overnight triggered floods in several parts of the country as rivers in 10 districts are now flowing above the danger level, marooning thousands of people and disrupting road communications in different areas.

The Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre (FFWC) on Friday warned water levels in rivers could rise further while reports suggests erosion of bank lines in some areas.

“All the major rivers are in rising trend . . . all the major rivers may (continue to) rise in next 72 hours, the FFWC in its latest bulletin said, report BSS and bdnews24.com.

But the centre predicted a “rapid rise” of the water levels in rivers in north-eastern Sylhet region, south-western greater Chattagram ranging from Feni to Hill Tracts and south-western Barishal region in the next 24 hours until Saturday.

Meanwhile, Disaster Management and Relief Minister Dr Enamur Rahman in a media briefing said the government has started preparations to tackle the situation.

"A central control room at the ministry kept a constant contact with officials in the affected areas," the state minister said.

Rahman said gushing waters from upstream region overnight triggered erosion in central Manikganj on the outskirts of the capital Dhaka while efforts was underway to save people and infrastructure there.

He acknowledged that erosion in Manikganj sent a visible signal that the deluge could engulf more areas but added government machineries including the health ministry, armed forces and non-government organizations chalked up coordinated plans to face any situation.

Relief in the form of 17,500 metric tonnes of rice, 50,000 packets of dry food and Tk 20.9 million have been sent to these districts.

The districts will each receive 500 tents and medical teams within the next few days, said State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Enamur Rahman.   

 “The district and upazila administrations by now started distributing food among the victims while supplies of other required materials including medicines are underway,” a spokesman of the disaster management ministry said.

According to officials and residents, continued rains swelled water level in Bandarban’s Sangu River cutting off the district’s communication lines with rest of the country and affecting as well its internal communication systems.

They said a portion of the Chattogram-Rangamati road near Ghagra’s Kalabagan area collapsed due to the torrential downpour; a landslide and culvert collapse halted communication on the Rangamati-Bandarban road.

Swelling waters in the Jamuna River affected thousands in the Lalmonirhat and Kurigram districts marooning several thousands and inundating scores of villages and localities.

The Water Development Board opened all 44 sluice gates of the Teesta Barrage to avert flood-related casualties as the rise of the Teesta already flooded nearby regions and waterlogged a few thousand people.

The inflated water in the Surma and several small rivers submerged settlements and roads in areas of Sunamganj bordering India with officials saying the flash flood breached over 10,000 homes in the district.

Nearly 100 primary schools suspended their classes considering the security of the children in view of heavy rainfall and deluge in Sunamganj.

A landslide caused by excessive rainfall collapsed a dam in Jamalpur also flooding several villages there while officials said unless repaired immediately, the gushing waters would submerge more areas there.

Bangladesh Meteorological Department officials, meanwhile, said the shared information they received from their counterparts in the Indian met office suggested that heavy rainfall could lash Bangladesh’s northwestern, north eastern and southeastern parts of Bangladesh and their adjoining regions in India’s Assam and Meghalaya states in next 24 to 48 hours.

“At places the downpours could be more than heavy,” a met office spokesman in Dhaka said.

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