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Dozens killed in Nepal’s biggest natural disaster of the year

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At least 14 people have been killed and 41 others are missing after severe flash floods and a massive landslide hit northwest Nepal's Baglung district this week. Rescuers noted that the death toll may increase as they search through remains of dozens of houses swept away by waters or buried in the mud.

The disaster took place on September 3 in Bhobang of Dhorpatan Municipality-9 in Baglung district.

As many as 40 houses were washed away in 3 settlements, officials said Friday, September 4, adding that the landslides have also washed a health post, buildings of 2 primary schools, 3 micro-hydroelectric plants, many drinking water spouts, and a number of suspension bridges. 

Army personnel involved in search operations had to use shovels and picks to look through debris for survivors, said spokesman Santosh B. Poudyal.

"This is the biggest natural disaster of the year," home ministry official Murari Wasti told Reuters on Thursday. "We have reports of 48 victims — 12 dead and 36 missing — but there could be many more victims as people were trapped while they were still sleeping."

Search and rescue operations are still in progress but large scale relief operations are currently not possible due to bad weather and damaged roads.

This year, at least 287 people have died while 114 others went missing in monsoon-related incidents across the county.

Featured image credit: TV Annapurna/YouTube

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