4 December 2023
Fact checkMisleading

Misleading: These clips do not show floods in Libya

A video featuring 10 different scenes of floods was used in a claim about Libya but Annie Lab can prove at least six of them are unrelated to the recent natural disaster there.

A video posted on X in mid-September featured a series of 10 clips showing devastating floods. The tweet said “Don’t forget to pray for Libya,” referring to the widely reported recent natural disaster in the country with 11,300 people dead and 10,100 missing.

However, the video contains many unrelated clips that are old and shot in other countries.

Clip 1: Flood in Swat Valley Madyan in Northern Pakistan in 2022 (0:00-0:06)

The first flood scene in the video shows torrential water flowing below a bridge.

We found a YouTube video posted on Aug. 26, 2022, showing the same bridge and the murky flood water. Its description said the footage was taken in Madyan, Northern Pakistan.

Comparison of the two flood videos, a screenshot of the misleading video on X (left) and a screenshot of the video of the flood in Madyan, Pakistan (Right)

We geolocated the bridge and the surrounding area to confirm the clip shows the Madyan bridge.

Geolocation of the Madyan bridge (left) and location of the flooded Madyan bridge shown in the YouTube video (The yellow line traces the curve of the bridge as shown in the video)

Around 33 million people have been affected and more than 1,000 people have been killed due to the floods in Pakistan in August of 2022.

Clip 2: Flood in Kullu, Himachal Pradesh, India in 2022 (0:09-0:14)

The raging flood waters hitting part of a red housing building in the second clip shows a flash flood in Himachal Pradesh, a northern state in India.

The Economic Times reported on the incident with a picture of the red building identical to the one in the video on X.

The article, published on Aug. 22, 2022, said the flood occurred in the Swollen Beas River in the Kullu District in Himachal Pradesh.

Comparison of the misleading video (left) and screenshot from Economic Times showing the floods in Himachal Pradesh (right)

The photo posted by Economic Times contained the letters “PTI” on the upper right corner.

Keyword search led to this article on the same incident, with the photo credited to PTI or Press Trust of India.

Clip 3: Flood in Pakistan in 2022 (0:14:02 – 0:14:11)

This short clip features a raging stream of water and what looks like a damaged highway. Through reverse image search, we found a longer version of the same video posted in August 2022, showing part of the road collapsing due to the flooding.

Comparison of the misleading video (left) and the longer video posted on YouTube (right)

It says the incident took place in Balochistan, Pakistan. CNN reported that the monsoon rains devastated the country in the same month and Balochistan was among the affected areas.

Although we could not geolocate the exact highway, it is safe to say this video clip does not show the recent floods in Libya.

Clip 4: Flood in the Fuyang district in Hangzhou, China in 2023 (0:20-0:27)

Another clip showing flood waters smashing residential buildings was taken in Dayuan Town, Fuyang District, in Hangzhou.

A Douyin video that recorded the same incident from a different angle said it was taken in July this year.

Comparison of the misleading video (left) and the video posted on Douyin regarding the flood in Hangzhou in 2023

We looked into the two videos further and learned that the misleading clip on X could be a flipped version of this Douyin clip.

The same Douyin account also posted several videos of the same area showing the aftermath of the flood.

At least five people died and three went missing while over 1,500 people were evacuated due to the flood in Hangzhou.

Clip 5: Flood in Xiangxi, Hunan, China in 2023 (0:32-0:34)

The fifth clip shows a flood in Xiangxi in Hunan Province, which happened in June.

A news report by the Chinese media Tianmu News included the same video on its website.

Comparison of the misleading video (left) and the video posted on Tianmu news regarding the flood in Hunan

Clip 6: An old flood clip (0:40-0:44)

We could not find out where this clip was taken or when it was taken, but we can confirm that the video was posted in September 2022 on Instagram, with a claim that the video shows floods in Pakistan.

Meanwhile, we also found a news report by Al Khaleej Emirati in September 2023, claiming the video was taken in Indonesia.

While we were unable to confirm the exact location of the incident, it is safe to say the clip does not show the recent floods in Libya.

Comparison of the misleading video (top) and the videos posted on Al Khaleej (left) and Instagram (right)

The other four clips included in the video in question are in low resolution and poor quality, so much so that Annie Lab could not investigate any further.