Country-wide flood death toll rises to 1 459, India

Country-wide flood death toll rises to 1 459, India

More than 1 400 people have been killed in India since the onset of the 2018 Southwest monsoon. The number of people who died in just 6 states this monsoon season climbed to 1 211, which is the highest toll in the last two years.

As of September 3, 2018, the death toll caused by extreme rainfall and floods across India since the onset of 2018 Southwest monsoon in June stood at 1 459, India's interior ministry said.

The worst affected is Kerala with 488 casualties as of September 3, followed by Uttar Pradesh with 256, West Bengal with 210, Karnataka with 170, Assam with 50 and Uttarakhand with 37.

The Kerala government described the flooding as the worst in a century. Infectious diseases have been spreading in the area due to deteriorating hygiene conditions, killing 40 people so far. Standing crops on over 57 024 ha (140 909 acres) of land were damaged in the state.

IMD officials say the rainfall for the entire country is close to the usual amount, but that it is concentrated in certain areas. They are calling on people to stay alert for downpours during the next week or so.

In 2017, The Times of India reports, around 1 200 people had died in flood-related incidents in the five states of Bihar, West Bengal, Assam, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh. Bihar accounted for the highest number of casualties with 514 deaths, followed by 261 in West Bengal, 160 in Assam, 124 in Maharashtra and 121 in UP. These states had 34 million population affected by floods.

In 2016, the country-wide flood death toll was 936. Bihar had the highest loss of 254 people, followed by 184 in Madhya Pradesh, 145 in Maharashtra and 102 in Uttarakhand.

The deadliest monsoon-induced disaster in recent years in South Asia took place in India's northern Uttarakhand state in June 2013 when flooding and landslides killed around 5 800 people. 

Featured image credit: ADG PI - Indian Army

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