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Floods and landslides in Pakistan

Friday, 12 September 2014

Type of Event:
Flood, Landslide
Location of Event:
Pakistan
Date of Charter Activation:
12 September 2014
Charter Requestor:
UNITAR/UNOSAT on behalf of UNOCHA
Project Management:
UNITAR/UNOSAT

Description of the event

Monsoon rains brought devastating floods and landslides to Pakistan in September 2014. It's estimated that almost 300 people have died since 02 September and over 2 million have been affected.

The Punjab and Kashmir Provinces, on the border with India, have suffered the worst of the flooding, and the majority of the deaths in Pakistan took place in Punjab. After the heavy rain, rivers - including the Chenab - in Pakistan and India rose and flooded, sweeping downstream. The surge of water inundated villages and agricultural areas, as well as parts of nearby cities, destroying thousands of homes. Residents had little warning of the rapidly developing flood, which accounted for much of the initial death toll when people were caught in their homes in the night.

It has been reported that as many as 700,000 people were displaced by the floods, and sought refuge or escape wherever they could find a areas of higher land or vehicles and boats.

Rescue workers began efforts to aid the victims and those left stranded by the floods, but landslides have also cut off roads and destroyed bridges, leaving some areas isolated and difficult to reach.

On 10 September, the Pakistan government authorised the destruction of a dyke on the Chenab River in Punjab Province, to prevent the rising water levels from building up further and surging down to urban areas further south. But as a side-effect, the river flooded agricultural areas and 200 villages in the region.

Standing waters in Tarind Muhammed Panah area, Punjab Province, Pakistan

Source: Sentinel-1
Acquired: 16/09/2014

Copyright: Copernicus 2014
Map produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Flood waters in Chiniot area, Punjab Province, Pakistan

Source: SPOT-6 / TerraSAR-X
Acquired: SPOT-6: 16/09/2014
TerraSAR-X: 16/09/2014

Copyright: SPOT-6 © CNES 2014 – Distribution: Airbus Defence and Space
TerraSAR-X © German Aerospace Center (DLR), 2014 Airbus Defence and Space / Infoterra GmbH
Map produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Overview of flood waters in Multan area, Punjab Province, Pakistan

Source: Landsat-8 / TerraSAR-X
Acquired: Landsat-8: 15/07/2014
TerraSAR-X: 15/09/2014

Copyright: Landsat-8 © NASA/USGS
TerraSAR-X © German Aerospace Center (DLR), 2014 Airbus Defence and Space / Infoterra GmbH
Map produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT