By Libya Herald staff.
Tripoli, 1 December 2013:
Last night’s storms left much of the capital flooded. The combination of road . . .[restrict]closures and drivers unused to ‘fording’ through extensive water resulted in inevitable traffic chaos.
Roads around Tripoli became congested as early as 4pm yesterday, with one driver saying that it took two hours just to travel between Zuwara and Zawia. Many people were stuck in their slow-moving vehicles until at least midnight. One family spoke of their frustration when they finally reached Maya, only to be sent back to Zawia because of road closures. A lorry had tipped over, blocking the main road, and many partially-submerged cars were also causing obstructions.
Zawia announced that anyone stuck on the road to Tripoli could spend the night at the town’s Educational Hospital, although many stayed with friends or relatives.
Residences across Tripoli experienced varying degrees of water damage, from ingress through windows and roofs unable to withstand torrential rains, to major flooding.
The owner of one house in the Gout Ashaal district of the capital said water levels on the ground floor of his premises almost reached his knees. He said when he tried to open drains in the house, water surged up out of these, mixing sewage and waste with the rain water.
Another resident in the area who was trying to get home on foot found himself wading waist-deep through icy water down local roads. Gout Ashaal is famed locally for its bad planning, which features particularly narrow streets.
The capital’s poor sewerage systems and rubbish problems meant that much of the flood waters were unsanitary. In Suq Al-Juma, however, some was exceptionally clean, after the rains swept through a soap factory, sending thick soap suds cascading down the streets.
According to Tripoli Local Council’s official Facebook page, at least 50 houses were damaged in the Garibouli district outside Tripoli, although no injuries were reported.
This morning, traffic was bad in many places across the capital as drivers struggled to navigate driving still flooded streets. [/restrict]