November 2015 – MIDDLE EAST – Extreme conditions have caused deadly havoc in the Middle East over the past fortnight, but a “river of hail” running through the Arabian desert is easily the most surreal in the unprecedented run of freak weather. Footage of the odd phenomenon shot at an unspecified location shows a vast torrent of icy water flowing through the arid desert like a glacier on fast forward after recent hail storms fed into local waterways.
Large chunks of ice are visible in the hypnotic stream, and a fellow on camera cheerily puffing a cigarette scoops out a handful of hailstones that would have been at least golf ball-sized when they first hit the earth. Foul weather has racked the region lately, with violent storms lashing Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Iraq.
At least 58 Iraqis have been killed, mostly in electrical accidents, as floods swept through Baghdad last week. The country now faces a cholera outbreak as it struggles to deal with the damage to infrastructure. Many of the countries affected have been particularly hard hit because they lack drainage systems that can handle heavy rainfall, as evidenced by dramatic footage that emerged from the Jordanian capital of Amman last week showing an apartment block completely inundated with water. –9 News