Heavy downpours have triggered flooding, forcing over 3,500 international and domestic tourists to be evacuated from the tourist town of Petra, in southern Jordan, according to Jumana Ghuneimat, Jordanian state minister for media affairs and government spokesman.
The continuing rains in the Daba region in southern Jordan have also led to the closure of the desert highway in both directions, Ghuneimat said. A large number of vehicles remained blocked as the highway flooded and traffic trapped those trying to leave.
In Mlaih district of Madaba governorate, where a girl was killed when her family's car was washed away by flood waters, rescue teams and divers were on the spot looking for other missing persons, she reported the official news agency of Petra. Workers were also trying to restore electricity to communities where rainfall caused generators malfunctions, causing blackouts.
Rescue operations continue in Jordan. So far, 60 people have been rescued and nine moved to the al-Nadeem hospital in Madaba, Ghuneimat said. The authorities have also deployed a drone to look for flooded areas for missing persons and to assess the damage caused by the storm.
Continuing the search and rescue operations, Ghuneimat advised the public to exercise maximum caution and to deal with the weather conditions in a "very serious" way.
He said that the Petra Regional Development and Tourism Authority (PDTRA) has activated early warning systems using loudspeakers and mosques to warn about weather conditions and the importance of getting away from flooded areas.
The Crown Prince of Jordan, Hussein bin Abdullah, has directed the authorities to focus on the advancement of efforts to save those who have been trapped by floods.
Hassan Al-Qaiam, Governor of Madaba, said that the Mlaih area has not undergone extreme floods in many years, according to the Petra news agency.