Children swept away in Jordan flash flood
by Onize Ohikere
Posted 10/26/18, 10:54 am
Authorities in Jordan on Friday continued to search for survivors after flash floods a day earlier killed at least 20 people, the majority of them children. About 37 middle school students, seven teachers, and other visitors were at the hot springs near the Dead Sea when heavy rainfall triggered the sudden flood. “It swept away the students for 4 to 5 kilometers,” said Brig. Gen. Farid al-Sharaa, a Civil Defense spokesman. Officials said 13 of the dead and 26 of about 36 injured people were children from a private school in Amman.
The Israeli military dispatched a search-and-rescue team to the area. Helicopters, divers, and teams with sniffer dogs searched the slopes near the Dead Sea into Thursday night and resumed the next morning. Jordanian King Abdullah II ordered the flag at the palace’s main entrance to fly at half-staff for three days.
Al-Sharaa said the flooding was one of the deadliest occurrences involving schoolchildren in recent times. In April, 10 Israeli students died in flash floods while hiking on a trail near the Dead Sea.
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Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.