Six young women, four sisters and two cousins aged between 18 and 25, have died after they drowned in a pond in Saudi Arabia.
The tragedy happened when two families were out on a picnic in the Armah area, around 110 kilometres northeast of the Saudi capital Riyadh.
One of the young women fell into the pond, and in their efforts to rescue her, the other five who were with her also drowned, media and police reports said. A search operation was launched by the police on Saturday afternoon after they were informed about the tragedy and civil defence servicemen and divers were able to recover four of the bodies.
The other two bodies were found early on Sunday after the level of the water in the pond was reduced in a large-scale operation that involved the use of heavy machinery, local news site Sabq reported.
One of the fathers reportedly collapsed and needed medical treatment at the hospital upon hearing about the tragedy. Civil Defence officers urged Saudi nationals and foreigners to exercise the highest levels of caution during their outings and to keep away from flooded valleys, ponds and water collection sites. Saudi Arabia is still reeling from the tragic death of a young girl, Luma, who fell into a well as she was on an outing with her family and walked away from them.