Abidjan, Ivory Coast – Flooding caused by overnight torrential rain killed 17 people in Ivory Coast’s economic capital Abidjan, a minister said on Tuesday.
Interior Minister Sudoku Diakite informed the media that the downpour which started at 11:00 pm on Monday continued until 6:00 am on Tuesday, causing flash floods up to 2.5 metres (more than eight feet).
He said rescue teams saved 115 people and searches are under way for other casualties, including that emergency medical centres had been set up across the seaside city.
The floods have affected a large parts of the capital, including area’s where many embassies and the presidential palace are located to the working-class Yopougon neighbourhood.
Fiarmcre Lili of the civil protection agency said, “Many residents are perched on the roofs of their homes.”
A AFP correspondent said the area of l Cocody and neighbouring Riviera, several homes were flooded and boundary walls toppled, with many cars washed away from driveways.
A resident said, “I have never seen anything like this in my life,” their car was swept 600 metres from the house.
“I was sleeping upstairs. My friend who was next to me woke me up saying ‘Get up, there’s water’. I looked out of the window and saw cars and furniture being swept away on the streets,” said Ismael Oulata, a fitness coach.
“Then the water started coming up the stairs.”
Many businesses have suffered loses, machines in the gym downstairs were damaged and an adjoining hairdressing salon was smeared with mud.
Pizzeria owner, Sabine said, “We lost everything.”
Ivory Coast rainy season starts in April until October. The area that receives the most rain is usually around the coast.
Photo Credit- Reuters