Flash floods in Jordan swept away a school bus killing at least 18 people, October 25, 2018. (VCG Photo)
Rescuers combed the shores of Jordan's Dead Sea resort area early on Friday to find survivors after rainstorms unleashed flash floods that killed at least 20 people, mostly school children during on an outing.
Thirty-seven people were rescued in a major operation involving helicopters, army personnel and divers searching for survivors who had been swept from valleys to the shores of the area, the lowest point on the Earth, civil defense sources said.
Police chief Brigadier General Farid al Sharaa told state television that the torrential rains swept away a bus carrying 44 children and teachers who were on a school trip picnicking in the popular destination.
Jordanian Prime Minister Omar Razzaz said it appeared the school had broken regulations by the ministry of education that banned trips to the Dead Sea due to bad weather.
Many are feared missing, hospital sources said.
A bridge on one of the cliffs of the Dead Sea had collapsed due to the intensity of the rains.
Families of victims were searching the rugged area after search teams suspended operations overnight for a few hours, a witness said.
Neighboring Israel sent search-and-rescue helicopters to assist, an Israeli military statement said, adding that the team dispatched at Amman's request was operating on the Jordanian side of the Dead Sea.