The devastating collapse of dams in Derna, Libya, has left the city reeling in the wake of catastrophic flooding, with a death toll now estimated at 3,000 with this expected to rise, according to Ahmed Madroud, the deputy mayor of Derna. 

In a candid interview with Al Jazeera, Madroud revealed that the dams in Derna had not seen proper maintenance since 2002 and were ill-equipped to withstand this week's torrential floods unleashed by Storm Daniel. He emphasized the tremendous challenge ahead in repairing the extensive damage caused by the disaster.

The dams have not been maintained since 2002, Madroud told Al Jazeera. He explained that the initial dam, standing at 70m tall, gave way under the pressure of the surging waters. Subsequently, the water accumulated behind the second dam, leading to its eventual rupture.

The current death toll is 3000, but Madroud expressed concerns that the actual number could be much higher. As rescue and relief efforts continue, Madroud highlighted the ongoing challenges faced by the city's residents.

With road access still uncertain and essential services like internet and electricity severed since the storm's onslaught, Derna's population of approximately 100,000 remains at risk. Around 20 percent of the city has reportedly been destroyed, particularly buildings situated close to the overflowing river.


Source: Al Jazeera – Published on September 12, 2023