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Dublin: 5 °C Monday 17 February, 2020

Saudi Arabia stricken by heavy flooding

Meterology expert says the city of Jeddah must be redeveloped if it is to cope with increasing rainfall.

Image: MrSirunit via YouTube

HEAVY RAIN IN JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia, has caused serious flooding again this year.

The head of the meteorology department at King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah told Bloomberg that the city must be redeveloped if it is to cope with increasingly heavy rainfall in coming years.

In November 2009, 123 people died in flooding in Jeddah and over 10,700 buildings were destroyed.

Saudi Arabia is one of the world’s richest countries due to its position as a major oil supplier, but Jeddah has no sewage system, according to Reuters. Waste from underground tanks has begun mixing with the floodwaters, meaning the water flowing into homes and businesses is contaminated.

The heavy rainfall has also caused parts of Jeddah to suffer power cuts.

Ruling Saudi monarch King Abdullah has ordered the mobilisation of all services relevant to emergency rescue operations in the city after water levels rose rapidly today. He warned that those deemed “careless in this serious matter” would be punished, the AFP reports.

After the 2009 flooding, the king pursued legal action against officials and contractors for construction which had added to the escalation of the floods.

The following video compilation from Storyful shows furniture and cars being swept away by the muddy water:

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