Unusual flooding in Lebanon brings city to standstill

By January 14, 2013

Lebanon (SAT7/MNN) — Stormy weather on January 7 sparked widespread flooding in Lebanon, prompted chaos on the roads, and closed schools nationwide until January 9.

Lebanon hasn't seen a storm that strong in at least 25 years. Meteorologists said the storm came from Russia and reached peak strength on January 6. Roads in northern Israel, the West Bank, and by the Dead Sea in the east were closed because of flooding.

Government officials say the storm caused extensive damage to homes, businesses, crops, and public infrastructure across Lebanon.

SAT-7, a Christian satellite television ministry to the Middle East and North Africa, didn't escape the deluge. Their offices and studios in Lebanon were inundated after local floodwater defenses failed.

The disaster incurred over $50,000 in material damages and thousands more in loss of work, opportunity, and administrative overhead. Rainwater ruined set décor, carpeting, office supplies, furniture, soundproofing and isolation materials, and damaged a teleprompter.

Cleanup crews were immediately hired to pump rainwater out of the building and move the equipment that survived. Live broadcasts were suspended for several days pending alternative arrangements.

Naji Daoud, Executive Director of SAT-7 Lebanon, immediately called insurance adjusters to the scene and plans to file a petition with the government in hopes of obtaining damage compensation. However, he observed that "we cannot tell how much–if ever–they may pay."

In spite of the unexpected setback, SAT-7 staff members are determined to continue providing quality, Christ-centered broadcasts to viewers.  

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