Sri Lanka storms, landslides kill 5, leave 1,000 displaced

Sri Lankan youth search for resealable items those washed ashore as monsoon clouds hover in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Monday, May 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena)


COLOMBO: Heavy rain and lightning strikes across Sri Lanka have left at least five people dead and displaced more than 1,000, officials said Monday.

Pradeep Kodippili, a spokesman forf the Disaster Management Center, said lightning killed three people and landslides killed two others in different parts of the island.

The center said 1,024 people were moved to 20 safe locations. Hundreds of army troops were deployed to carry out relief work and rescue operations as heavy rains caused flash floods in many parts of the country.

The country has been experiencing heavy rains since Sunday, prompting the government to issue landslide warnings for five districts.

The meteorology department has warned of thundershowers with strong winds over the next 24 hours and asked people to take precautions against lightning strikes.

Sri Lanka has suffered frequent natural calamities in recent years. More than 200 people were killed in mudslides and floods during monsoon rains last May.