At least 45 people have died in northwestern Pakistan as torrential rains triggered flash floods, local officials said, and bad weather is hampering further search and rescue efforts.
Several districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province were hit hard by the flooding after the heavy rain began overnight Saturday, Pakistani national disaster management official Latif ur Rehman said.
Rehman told the Australian Broadcasting Company that rescue workers had not been able to reach three affected districts in the far-flung mountainous north of the province.
"Bad weather is the main reason, we are yet unable to send helicopters to these areas," Rehman said.
Rehman told ABC there have been reports that at least 180 houses had been destroyed in those areas.
"We need to get bodies and the injured out from under the rubble and provide food and tents to the survivors," Rehman said, adding that four truckloads of supplies had been sent to affected districts.
At least 34 people have been admitted to hospitals with injuries, he said.
Sky News reports that a bridge connecting the villages of Toormang and Shalfalam over the Panjkora River has been partially swept away by the heavy flooding.
Flash floods are commonly triggered during South Asia's summer monsoon season. Pre-monsoon rains like the current downpour frequently cause damage in Pakistan — particularly in rural villages with minimal infrastructure.
Residents of scores of villages close to rivers were given warnings to vacate and leave for safer places, Rehman said.
"We're left on our own. Nobody from the government is coming to help us," said Habib Khan, a resident of the northern Swat valley, talking to a local TV news channel.
The channel showed damaged houses and submerged streets in the valley and other parts of the northwestern province.