TEHRAN – At least 70 people have died and 791 others have been injured in massive flooding in Iran in recent weeks, according to the latest data provided by the country’s Emergency Services.
Chief of Iran’s emergency services, Pir Hossein Kolivand, told state-run news agency IRNA that 45 of the wounded remained hospitalized.
Western Iranian provinces of Khuzestan and Lorestan remained on alert, Kolivand added.
A fourth special emergency operations team was sent to the aforementioned provinces, especially to the towns of Pol-e Dokhtar and Mamulan, important locations in the agriculture and ranching industry in Lorestan.
The team was made up of ambulances and emergency doctors, while in the Lorestan city of Pol-e Dokhtar, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps have set up a field hospital.
Kolivand emphasized that since there was no access to these areas by land, air aid was being provided to the teams deployed there.
He also said that they were working to prevent the floods from leading to infections; no outbreak has emerged in the country up until now, he added.
The presence of psychologists in the affected areas to support the victims was given special importance by Kolivand.
The Iranian parliamentary speaker, Ali Larijani, promised on Thursday that the authorities were going to pay compensation to people who had lost their houses, crops, and livestock.
Larijani said the floods were mainly caused by the overflow of rivers because they had not been properly dredged in time, and that some construction had been carried out too close to riverbeds.
The recent floods have forced the evacuation of hundreds of towns and tens of thousands of people in at least 25 of the 31 Iran provinces, and have damaged dozens of roads and bridges.
Along with Khuzestan and Lorestan, Golestan and Mazandaran in the north and Fars in the south are the other Iranian provinces most affected by flooding.
In Fars, 21 people died and 164 others were injured due to a flood that took place in the Iranian city of Shiraz on March 25-26.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani accused and denounced the United States two days ago of preventing – with US economic sanctions – the arrival of humanitarian aid in Iran to alleviate the crisis caused by the floods.