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Record-breaking rains cause devastating flash floods in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

jeddah flash flood november 24 2022

At least two people have lost their lives after record-breaking rainfall caused devastating flash floods in the city of Jeddah (population 4 million), Saudi Arabia’s Mecca Province on November 24, 2022.

Between 08:00 and 14:00 LT on November 24, Jeddah’s southern area recorded 179 mm (7.04 inches) of rainfall, setting a new all-time 24-hour record for the city. In just two hours, the city recorded 60 mm (2.36 inches) of rain.

According to Saudi Arabia’s National Center for Meteorology, the rainfall that hit Jeddah today exceeded the amount of rainfall registered in 2009 when flash floods killed 123 people.1

Unofficial reports mention as much as 246 mm (9.68 inches) of rain in 10 hours and a peak rate of 900 mm (35.4 inches) per hour at a private weather station.

The resulting flash floods turned roads into raging rivers, sweeping away cars, stranding drivers, and damaging homes.

The city’s King Abdulaziz International Airport announced flight delays and urged all passengers to contact carriers for up-to-date schedules. 

The official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported before dawn that schools in the city would be closed, as rains were forecast to continue throughout the day. 

Schools were also closed in the nearby towns of Rabigh and Khulais to preserve the safety of students.

References:

1 Saudi Arabia: Two dead in devastating Jeddah flash floods – Middle East Eye – November 24, 2022

Featured image credit: Wasim Bari (stillshot)

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