Rescue operations after floods in south-eastern Bulgaria

Firefighters and rescue teams have carried out more than 200 rescue operations in south-eastern Bulgaria in the past day, the Interior Ministry said on December 6.

The previous day, about 30 families were displaced after floods in a residential area of Straldzha municipality.

In the Elhovo municipality, the Tundzha River was on the verge of bursting its banks, Bulgarian National Television said. About 100 families would have to be evacuated should this happen.

Icing of electrical supply infrastructure meant that many villages in the Belogradchik municipality still had no power, and an emergency declaration remains in force.

In the Bourgas area, the village of Chernitsite was threatened by a local dam that appeared likely to overflow.

The situation in the Bourgas region village of Izvor and in the Dolno Ezerovo area was being closely monitored as water levels in the Vaya lake rose to potentially hazardous levels.

Rain was expected to ease on December 5 in south-eastern Bulgaria, but intensify the following day, weather forecasters said.

The Interior Ministry said that teams were monitoring all critical areas near reservoirs in the districts of Yambol, Haskovo, Bourgas, Sliven and Varna.

In Vidin, more than 30 settlements had no electricity. Because of damage to the power supply, eight water pumping stations were not operating, leaving 26 villages – with, in all, about 5000 residents, with no water supply.

In Yambol, about 80 people who had been evacuated from the Straldzha area were being accommodated in a local school.

In Haskovo, there had been more than 50 reports of flooded sites, and minor roads in the municipalities of Topolovgrad, Simeonovgrad and Dimitrovgrad were closed, the Interior Ministry said.

At the Kapitan Andreevo border checkpoint with Turkey, closed on December 4 because of flooding, normal traffic had resumed, the Interior Ministry said.

The banks of the Maritsa River in Svilengrad had been strengthened with sandbags as it reached its critical maximum at 3am on December 6, the ministry said.

In the Stara Zagora region, there were several flooded houses in five villages in the Radnevo area. Four towns and villages in the area had no electricity, the ministry statement said.



The Sofia Globe staff

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