THE death toll following Libya’s devastating floods has soared to 11,300, with more than 10,000 still missing.
A major dam collapse washed a 10ft deep torrent of water through the eastern city of Derna on Sunday – wiping out everything in its path.
Health authorities previously put the death toll in Derna at 5,500, but according to the Libyan Red Crescent, this number has since risen to a gut-wrenching 11,300.
However, local officials suggest the death toll could be much higher than announced.
In comments to the Saudi-owned Al Arabia television station on Thursday, Derna Mayor Abdel-Moneim al-Ghaithi said the tally could climb to 20,000 given the number of neighbourhoods that were washed out.
The apocalyptic Strom Daniel also killed around 170 people elsewhere in the country, including the towns of Bayda, Susa, Um Razaz and Marj.
A U.N. official said Thursday that most casualties could have been avoided.
“If there would have been a normal operating meteorological service, they could have issued the warnings,” World Meteorological Organization head Petteri Taalas told reporters in Geneva.
“The emergency management authorities would have been able to carry out the evacuation.”
The International Committee of the Red Cross added that it has provided 6,000 body bags to local authorities, as well as medical, food and other supplies distributed to hard-hit communities.