Flash floods in two of Turkey’s earthquake-stricken provinces killed at least 14, authorities said Wednesday. Rescuers and divers are scrambling to search for people reported missing.
Torrential rain caused floods in several towns in Turkey's Adiyaman and Sanliurfa provinces, where more than 250,000 people are sheltering in tents.
In Adiyaman, torrential rain that began early Wednesday local time flooded tent cities where hundreds of thousands people are staying after the devastating twin earthquakes on Feb. 6. The province is among the two hardest-hit Turkish provinces by the temblors along with Hatay.
Videos circulating on social media showed tents full of survivors' mattresses, clothes and shoes ruined by the surging floodwaters. Several earthquake survivors were reported to have been forced to sleep outside of their wet tents.
In Adiyaman’s northwestern town of Tut, a mobile housing unit hosting a family of four was swept away by floodwaters, killing a 66-year-old woman, HaberTurk television reported. Rescuers are trying to find the missing members of the family.
Some 136 millimeters (5.5 inches) of rain fell across the province within 24 hours, according to Turkey’s disaster management agency AFAD, which came under heavy fire over its failure to respond to the earthquakes in a timely manner.
#Adıyaman ve #Şanlıurfa'da meydana gelen sel felaketinden etkilenen tüm vatandaşlarımıza geçmiş olsun dileklerimi iletiyorum.— Aylin Nazlıaka 🇹🇷 (@AylinNazliaka) March 15, 2023
Hayatını kaybeden canlarımıza Allah'tan rahmet, kaybolan vatandaşlarımızın da bulunmasını diliyorum. pic.twitter.com/Ee6oX1tBVO
In neighboring Sanliurfa, another Turkish province hit by the quakes, torrents of muddy water swept people and cars along the streets of several towns. Some 111 millimeters (4.5 inches) of rain fell across the province, AFAD said.
Television footage showed divers and rescuers trying to rescue people from an underpass swirling with dark brown water.
#Şanlıurfa'daki selde mahsur kalan vatandaşlar iş makineleri ve iplerle kurtarıldı.#selfelaketi pic.twitter.com/3hdCjCoNO5— Sabah (@sabah) March 15, 2023
Several emergency rooms at local hospitals were evacuated to upper floors after they were inundated by floodwaters, Turkish media reported. A video widely circulated on social media showed a road being ripped apart by floodwaters in the province's northwestern town of Bozova.
Ama yol yapıyorlar !#Şanlıurfa #selfelaketi Hilvan - Bozova yolu Ördek Köyü noktasında karayolu ikiye ayrıldı. pic.twitter.com/XfXYJTK7Ax— Kayhan AYHAN (@kayhanayhann) March 15, 2023
The torrential rain will continue to affect the country’s disaster zone until Thursday, according to AFAD.
The twin earthquakes that hit southeast Turkey and northern Syria killed more than 50,000 people, causing colossal destruction in 11 Turkish provinces and displacing millions of people. Hundreds of thousands of people have sheltered in tent cities and mobile housing units set up across the disaster zone.