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Avalanches Kill at Least 137 in Afghanistan

Climate
Avalanches Kill at Least 137 in Afghanistan

By Jeff Masters

Heavy snowfall in Afghanistan near the Pakistan border has triggered avalanches that have killed at least 137 people in recent days, The Guardian reported Monday. The death toll is expected to rise as rescuers reach remote areas where blocked roads and mountainous terrain were hampering rescue efforts.

Some villages in the worst-hit province of Nuristan, which received nearly 3m (10ft) of snow, have been cut off from communication. The latest Wunderground forecast for the region is calling for less than an inch of accumulating snow during the coming week, which should aid recovery efforts, fortunately.

Avalanches are common in Afghanistan's mountainous areas in winter. In February 2015, heavy snows triggered 40 avalanches in Panjshir Province in Afghanistan, killing at least 124 people, according to EM-DAT, the international disaster database. Insurance broker Aon Benfield put the death toll at 230.

Reposted with permission from our media associate Weather Underground.

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