Climate warning
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Libya 🇱🇾

Climate warning

Most Libya flood deaths could have been avoided

More than 5,000 people are known to have died and thousands more are missing after devastating floods swept through the Libyan port city of Derna. Entire neighbourhoods disappeared into the sea as a huge tsunami-like torrent of water swept through the city. Whole families were washed away, according to a Libyan journalist who has been speaking to survivors in the city, and who described the situation as "beyond catastrophic". The Wadi Derna river runs from Libya's inland mountains, through the city of Derna and into the Mediterranean. It is dry for much of the year, but the unusually heavy rain overwhelmed two crucial dams and destroyed several bridges.Residents of the city, who had been ordered by the local authorities to stay in their homes, reported hearing a loud blast before the city was engulfed in water. "The dams would have held back the water initially, with their failure potentially releasing all the water in one go. "The debris caught up in the floodwaters would have added to the destructive power," says Prof Stephens. The upper dam had a storage capacity of 1.5 million cubic metres of water, whilst the lower dam could hold 22.5 million cubic metres. Each cubic metre of water weighs about one tonne (1,000kg), so 1.5 million cubic metres of water would weigh 1.5 million tonnes. Combine that weight with moving downhill, and it can produce enormous power. Witnesses have said that the waters were nearly three metres in places. It is estimated that six inches (20cm) of fast moving flood-water is enough to knock someone off their feet, and 2ft (60cm) is enough to float a car. So it is no surprise that whole buildings were taken out in the floods.

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29 more agrees trigger contact with the recipient

  • Jane Wangui

    35 w

    Saw the news and it is so sad to loose lives.5000 is no joke ,it should be a wake up call concidering 10,000 people are missing.

    • Hilda Wangui

      35 w

      Urgent action is needed and prior preparedness and control measures should be put in place

      • Esther Wanjiku

        35 w

        This is a level of ignorance never seen before

        • john linus Tom

          35 w

          There is need to take action on climate

          • George Kariuki

            35 w

            This should serve as a call to action for governments and communities to invest in infrastructure and preparedness to prevent such avoidable catastrophes in the future.

            • Princess

              35 w

              It's disheartening to hear that most of the flood-related deaths in Libya could have been avoided.Such avoidable loss of life emphasizes the need for better planning and resources to mitigate the impact of natural disasters in vulnerable regions like Libya.

              • Gorffly mokua

                35 w

                Our leader's level of ignorance will cost the race of humanity dearly!!

                • zelda ninga

                  35 w

                  This is sad, and there was a report saying that they were some money set aside for the dam but nothing was done.

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