News Frontliner Web Desk, 01 April 2019: At least 28 people have been killed in a severe thunderstorm that swept through parts of southern Nepal on Sunday night. Hundreds more were injured. Death toll may rise, said police and government officials.
Many of those killed were asleep in simple temporary huts on Sunday night when powerful storm blew their shed, sending deadly debris flying through the air.
Bara District, near the Indian border, sustained the most damage and casualties. Bara borders India’s eastern state of Bihar.
The Nepal Army and the national police were deployed to Bara and neighboring Parsa District immediately. Rescuers however struggled to begin their job due to bad weather and darkness. Felled trees and electrical poles have blocked the main access highway, hindering rescue efforts.
The police estimates of 500 people being injured and death toll figure of 28 are both expected to rise, as emergency workers strated sifting through the debris of destroyed homes in the daylight hours on Monday.
Hospitals in the districts were filled with patients and were facing an acute shortage of blood.
Thunderstorms outside of the regular monsoon season are not unusual in Nepal, but never has one been so deadly.