QUETTA, Pakistan – A tropical cyclone lashed Pakistan's coastline with heavy rains and strong winds, killing at least 10 people and forcing thousands to flee to higher ground, their possessions loaded onto camels and cars.
At least three small boats were reported to have sunk and 18 fishing boats were missing; the navy sent a warship and two helicopters to search the rough seas for vessels caught in the storm.
Rivers flooded several coastal districts, killing at least 10 people, including four children, said Raziq Bugti, spokesman for the provincial government. Spillways were opened to release the water pressure on two dangerously full dams, he said.
Located on the same Arabian Sea coastline, Pakistan's largest city of Karachi suffered torrential rains and thunderstorms, which killed at least 228 people Saturday.
Rains and flooding also killed 38 people over the weekend in neighboring India, raising the death toll to 129 since the monsoon season set in four weeks ago, according to official reports.
Most of the 120,000 residents of the southwestern port city of Gwadar moved to higher ground, Mayor Abdul Ghaffar Hoth said. People from several smaller towns nearby loaded possessions onto camels or into cars and headed for the hills, he said.
"We have imposed an emergency in the district and asked the army and other forces to be on alert," Hoth said.
On the high seas, one boat with 13 crew aboard was rescued by the navy as it was sinking while the search continued for at least three others, two of which reportedly sank, said Lt. Mohammed Shahzad, spokesman for the Maritime Security Agency.
At least 18 fishing boats were missing, said Nasir Buneri, an official of the Fishermen Cooperative Society.