SHEBERGHAN , Afghanistan, April 25 (UPI) -- At least 58 people have died and hundreds are stranded after heavy rains and flash flooding struck northern Afghanistan, officials said Friday.
The heavy rains Thursday destroyed homes, many made of mud, in Jowzjan province. The provincial governor, Boymurod Qoyinli, said 3,000 homes were destroyed and at least 80 people are missing in the province.
“Thousands of homes have been destroyed and thousands are suffering,” Qoyinli said. He added three remote districts in the province were particularly hard-hit, and that the number of victims was likely to rise.
Residents found themselves trapped atop their houses as water levels rose, awaiting rescue by helicopter.
One unidentified woman reported she was caught by surprise by the flood, after reading her evening prayers, and said two of her children drowned.
Rescue operations by army and police forces are underway in the province, which is 390 kilometers (242 miles) north of Afghan capital of Kabul.