Sunday, May 2, 2010

16 die, scores injured as lightning strikes Bangladesh

Newstime (South Africa): Local news agencies in Bangladesh have confirmed that at least 16 people have died and scores of others injured by lightning strikes which took place throughout the country. Victims were as widespread as farmlands, at home or in some cases simply walking along the road. 6 people died and 4 were injured in the northeastern district of Habiganj, 120 kilometers northeast of the capital, Dhaka.

Elsewhere it was worse with 10 more killed and an unknown number injured in five districts spread throughout northern, central, southern and northeastern parts of the country. While confirming that the injured were rushed to hospitals officials were unavailable to comment.

Straddling the Tropic of Cancer, Bangladeshi climate is tropical with a mild winter from October to March, a hot, humid summer from March to June. A warm and humid monsoon season lasts from June to October and supplies most of the country's rainfall. Natural calamities, such as floods, tropical cyclones, tornadoes, and tidal bores occur almost every year.

In September 1998, Bangladesh saw the most severe flooding in modern world history. As the Brahmaputra, Ganges and Meghna spilt over and swallowed 300,000 houses, 9,700 kilometres of road and 2,700 kilometres of embankment 1,000 people were killed and 30 million more were made homeless with 135,000 cattle killed, 50 square kilometres of land destroyed and 11,000 kilometres of roads damaged or destroyed. Two-thirds of the country was underwater….

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