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Tropical Cyclone Chapala Batters Yemen, Dumps Years' Worth Of Rain

A satellite image showing Tropical Cyclone Chapala after it made landfall in Yemen.
Joint Typhoon Warning Center
A satellite image showing Tropical Cyclone Chapala after it made landfall in Yemen.

A rare tropical cyclone named Chapala has dumped years' worth of rain on Yemen in a matter of hours.

Yemen has already been ravaged by war, and now parts of it are under water.

Here's a photo published by the Yemen Post Newspaper:

Yemen is used to getting about 4 inches of rain per year. Getting accurate, on-the-ground rainfall amounts from Yemen is tough, but forecasters had estimated that Chapala could dump as much as 8 inches of rain.

Weather.com reports:

"In the coastal town of Mukalla, currently under al Qaeda control, thousands fled their homes, fearing rockslides and flooding, Reuters reported.

" 'The wind knocked out power completely in the city and people were terrified. Some residents had to leave their homes and escape to higher areas where flooding was less; it was a difficult night but it passed off peacefully,' Mukalla resident Sabri Saleem told Reuters.

"There have been no confirmed injuries in Mukalla so far, the report added."

The BBC has bit more on the situation:

"The UN's World Health Organisation (WHO) said it had delivered trauma kits for 1,000 patients in Mukalla, which has been controlled by al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula since April, and was providing fuel for hospitals and ambulances.

"The effects of the cyclone, it added, would be felt over large parts of Yemen but were likely to be more severe in Shabwa and Hadramawt.

"The provinces have a combined population of 1.8 million, including more than 100,000 internally displaced persons and 27,000 refugees and migrants."

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Eyder Peralta is NPR's East Africa correspondent based in Nairobi, Kenya.