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September 24, 2021
ENVIRONMENT HEALTH Social SOCIAL & HEALTH

Extreme weather in Romania

*Two persons killed

*Dozens of localities and hundreds of homes affected by rains, hail and thunderstorms

*Orange code flood warning still in force

Two persons have lost their lives because of the extreme weather phenomena registered over the weekend and at the start of this week. Torrential rains and floods have affected 41 localities in the Buzau, Cluj, Hunedoara, Iasi, Neamt, Olt, Suceava and Vrancea counties. Over the last two days, Interior Ministry intervention teams helped locals pump the flood waters out of their homes and households. In Arad, dozens of households, the Arad County Hospital’s Emergency Ward, and the basements of several churches and buildings were flooded on Sunday after a storm. In Suceava, 23 localities have been affected by storms, several homes and households being flooded and National Road 17 being blocked, dozens of tourists being stranded in holiday homes and boarding houses.

In Jiu Valley, almost 600 cars were damaged by hailstorm on the night of Saturday to Sunday. The hail was the size of an egg.

On Monday evening, the Bistrita-Nasaud Civil Contingencies Inspectorate issued a new tally of the damage registered in the county following the storms that took place on the evening of June 19. The number of localities affected has reached 13. Dozens of trees were uprooted in the county.

In Mures, the roofs of 307 homes were damaged by an extremely violent storm that locals described as a tornado. The roofs of 12 homes were completely destroyed.

Approximately 50 yellow and orange code weather and hydrological warnings were issued over the weekend and on Monday, according to the Interior Ministry. An orange code flood warning expired on Tuesday at 11 a.m. The code concerned the country’s western, central and south-western regions.

300 fire fighters, gendarmes and policemen intervened in 41 localities in Bacau, Cluj, Hunedoara, Iasi, Neamt, Olt, Suceava and Vrancea counties. In 15 localities in Hunedoara County, fire fighters intervened in order to pump flood waters out of flooded households. Water was pumped out of four homes and 25 courtyards in eight localities in Neamt County. In Horodnic de Jos locality, Suceava County, fire fighters and gendarmes helped people pump flood water out of 90 households. Likewise, four persons were evacuated from the same locality, out of precaution after their home was damaged.

In Lepsa village, Vrancea County, ten tourists who were at risk of remaining stranded in a boarding house were evacuated. One of them was a minor. Cars blocked on County Road 107P, after flood waters silted up the road, were able to move out after an intervention that lasted approximately two hours.

The floods registered in recent days have caused solely material damage. Interior Minister Petre Toba has asked Prefects to set up damage assessment commissions and to present their reports in the shortest of times. The civil contingencies bodies remain on alert, the situation on the ground and the measures taken being monitored and coordinated through the Interior Ministry’s Integrated Leadership National Centre, which is working around the clock, the Interior Ministry communique shows.

Premier Ciolos: I will want to see how we can help these communities

On Tuesday, in a videoconference with the prefects, Premier Dacian Ciolos asked for an analysis of the situation caused by the floods, in order for authorities to be able to organise in order to help those affected by the bad weather phenomena.

“I would like to know how we will organise along with the local communities in order to help people out and then to see how we will organise in the future in order to avoid, as much as possible, firstly human victims and then material damage both in terms of infrastructure and in terms of people’s households. (…) After this videoconference with the prefects, I will want to see, along with the ministers, how we can help these communities. The communes have this responsibility of helping people rebuild their households and I would like us to see how we can stimulate this, including with Government participation if need be,” Ciolos said at the start of his videoconference with the prefects.

The Prime Minister expressed his regret for the loss of life caused by the floods and at the same time asked for an assessment of the damage caused and a forecast for the following period.

“I wanted us to have this meeting in order to see how things stand, because these phenomena, this bad weather with a major impact in some localities, have already been taking place for several weeks now in various parts of the country, and I wanted us to analyse the situation we are in right now, how things are evolving in the areas where bad weather already occurred several weeks ago and to see what the forecast is for the immediately upcoming period. First of all, it is regrettable that people lost their lives. I know these were isolated cases and particular situations, but, at any rate, this is the most regrettable. I hope we will be capable of organising so as to avoid such situations, as much as possible, in the future too,” Ciolos added.

Deputy Premier Vasile Dincu, Interior Minister Petre Toba, Defence Minister Mihnea Motoc and Head of the Premier’s Chancellery Dragos Tudorache were among those present at the videoconference.

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