Heavy rainfall, flash floods wreak havoc in Turkey's Izmir

As torrential rain and severe winds were predicted to hit various parts of Turkey throughout the week, the city of Izmir saw flooding and widespread disruptions in transportation on Monday.


The heavy downpour in Izmir hindered daily life, causing flooding in many districts. Many citizens were trapped in their vehicles as they headed to work early on Monday due to the floodwaters.

Izmir received 126 kilograms of rainwater per square meter in a couple of hours, the Izmir municipality announced in a written statement.

"This is an extraordinarily huge figure, a serious disaster," Izmir Mayor Tunc Soyer said.

Local authorities also urged citizens not to leave their homes unless necessary, noting that flash flooding caused by heavy downpour has paralyzed the entire province and disrupted the traffic.

Video footage showed numerous vehicles were trapped in floods.

Yasemin Boncuk, a 43-year-old Izmir resident, told Xinhua that dozens of cars were washed away in the flash floodwaters in the Balcova district.

"There is a lot of material damage," Boncuk said, adding that she couldn't go to her work as it was not possible to get out of the house due to the flooding.

Weather forecasts said the rainfall is expected to continue in the region until Wednesday morning.

Izmir meteorology officials reported extremely heavy rainfall between 5:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. but said the rain was expected to let up in the city on Thursday. The Meteorology General Directorate has forecast heavy rainfall across Turkey, possibly causing flooding in some regions. A storm that broke in İstanbul late on Sunday caused ferry and sea bus runs to be canceled. High winds and rainfall continue to hamper everyday life, spelling hard times for commuters as well due to the traffic that appeared after the rainfall.

According to the directorate, the provinces of Antalya, Muğla, İzmir, Manisa, Balıkesir, Bursa, Çanakkale, Tekirdağ and Edirne will experience heavy rainfall during the week, Zaman reported. High winds from the Southeast will turn into storms in the northern Aegean. According to the data released by the directorate the rain that began around 6:00 a.m. in Izmir is predicted to continue with increasing winds. The directorate issued warnings for the people of Izmir since the rainfall has caused deep puddles on roads in the province.

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