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Floods Demolish 25,000 Houses Across Iran, Damage 60,000 Others

A huge flood wave inundated Khorramabad, capital of Lorestan province on Monday, April 1, 2019
A huge flood wave inundated Khorramabad, capital of Lorestan province on Monday, April 1, 2019

Floods have demolished over 25,000 houses across Iran in less than two weeks, Hadi Derafshi, an official at the Iranian Housing Foundation told reporters on Monday, April 1.

Iranian official news agency IRNA also quoted Derafshi as having said that "over 60,000 more houses have been damaged by the floods and need restoration."

Meanwhile, the immediate the order for evacuation of three cities in western provinces was issued Monday afternoon, as floods completely swamped the Khorramabad, the capital of Lorestan province.

The city's airport is also submerged and all flights to and from Khorramabad have been cancelled, the official said.

The provincial director of Red Crescent in Lorestan said that contact has been lost with most areas.

"Telephones are not working, our radio communications are down... at this moment we have no news of other cities and villages," he told IRINN, adding roads were flooded and helicopters were unable to take off due to the bad weather.

"We have requested emergency help from neighbouring provinces but at the present no one can do anything."

The armed forces have started evacuating people by force. Besides Khorramabad, the cities of Pol-e-Dokhtar and Mamulan are also being evacuated.

Meanwhile, Iran's southbound railways have also been partly submerged in flood water while landslides have blocked the railways in other parts of the route.

In another development, Iran's traffic police announced that snowfall in five provinces and heavy rainfall in 20 others have caused more problems.

The Iranian meteorological agency have called on Iranians to avoid travelling to the western and southwestern parts of the country as floods are likely to run across nine provinces in the area.

Flood in Khorramabad, capital of Lorestan province.

The agency warned that rivers are likely to overflow in Khuzestan, Ilam, Kermanshah, Kordestan, Lorestan, Charmahal and Bakhtiari, Kohkiloyeh and Boyer Ahmad, Fars, Isfahan and Bushehr provinces, adding that snowfall might bloc roads in highlands.

Meanwhile, storms and high winds have been reported in Bushehr and Khuzestan provinces on the Persian Gulf.

Colonel Nader Rahmani, the traffic police chief of Iran, has reported snowfall in the provinces of Azarbaijan, Ardabil, Ilam, Hamadan and Koredestan on Monday, adding that heavy rainfall continues in most other provinces.

Water and Power Authorities in western and southwestern provinces have been put on a state of alert, reports say.

All emergency water gates have been opened on Dez Dam in Khuzestan.

In another development, eight villages in Bamdej area as well as five other villages in other parts of Khuzestan province have been reportedly submerged in water while floods threaten still more villages in the province.

The crisis management agency in Khuzestan has issued warnings via text messages, calling on the people to avoid travelling in the areas where floods are likely, particularly in the areas close to rivers and local streams.

Reports say a river in Sousangerd, in Khuzestan province, has burst its banks and floods threaten houses in the area.

Deep flood waters in Ahvaz, capital of the oil-producing Khuzestan province.

Flood warnings have also been issued in Kermanshah, further north, where tens of families have been reportedly moved to emergency shelters.

Meanwhile power cuts have been reported in Kouhrang area in the province of Charmahal and Bakhtiari.

In the meantime, in Alborz province in the vicinity of Tehran, authorities have denied rumours about the overflow of water from Amir Kabir Dam. The authorities also denied that people living close to the dam have been advised to leave the area.

Rainfalls continued across Iran all Sunday, most heavily in northern, western and central Iran.

The latest report by the Iranian Red Crescent Society put the number of flood casualties during the past 12 days at 45 people.