School pupils among 18 killed in Jordan flash floods

27 October, 2018, 00:42 | Author: Essie Rivera
  • Image      The children were attending picnics in the Dead Sea area. File pic

According to a witness, the group had been on a bus heading towards a resort area when the floodwaters swept them into a valley.

Israel and Jordan braced for the first major storm of the winter on Thursday, with strong winds, heavy rains, and flooding expected to batter the country. The search for missing persons is ongoing and air force helicopters have been deployed to comb the area and search for survivors.

Also among the dead were passers-by who had been picnicking in the area, the civil defence said, adding that a nearby bridge had collapsed.

Brig. Gen. Farid al-Sharaa, a Civil Defense spokesman, said Friday that the flooding was one of the deadliest incidents in recent memory involving schoolchildren.

On Twitter, Jordanian user Renad Khafner said she knew of a mother who had sent her two daughters on the school trip that was hit in the flooding.

Relatives gather outside a hospital near the Dead Sea, Jordan.

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Rescuers combed the shores of Jordan's Dead Sea early on Friday, searching for survivors, after flash floods killed at least 20 people, majority children on a school outing.

"Thank God we managed to save 13 people without any injuries", Mr al Sahraa said. They were caught in a narrow stream as sudden torrential rainstorm flooded the area. Rescue workers using flashlights were searching the cliffs near the shore of the Dead Sea where bodies had been found.

King Abdallah canceled a trip to Bahrain to follow the rescue operations, state media said.

The five-star hotels located at the northern tip of the Dead Sea close to Amman and at high vantage points, were unaffected by Thursday's floods and are expected to operate as normal.

The Israeli military, in a statement, confirmed that it has sent search and rescue helicopters to help Jordan following Amman's request for assistance.

A general view shows the location of the accident where people were killed in a flash flood near the Dead Sea, Jordan, on October 25, 2018.

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