Storm havoc in Bulgaria: Varna mayor calls for schools to go over to distance learning

Following the severe winds and stormy weather that brought havoc to eastern Bulgaria, Varna mayor Blagomir Kotsev said on November 19 that he had sent an official request to the Education Ministry for schools in the municipality to go over to distance learning on November 20.

Earlier, a state of emergency was declared in Varna municipality, among the hardest-hit by the weekend weather that left a woman dead and caused widespread destruction.

“Conditions in the city are dangerous for children. Going to school and staying there pose risks to their health,” Kotsev said in a Facebook post, adding that at the same time, it was important that the learning process was not interrupted.

He said that the decision to switch to online learning mode had been confirmed orally and would be officially announced by the Ministry of Education in a few hours.

On November 19, traffic police urged motorists not to embark on journeys in Varna, Shoumen, Dobrich, Razgrad and Bourgas unless in case of extreme need and only if their cars were prepared for winter conditions.

The Varna-Bourgas main road was closed on Sunday.

The firefighting department said on Sunday that crews had responded to 300 incidents, including more than 200 in Varna, mainly fallen trees and branches.

Local media said that the shore of the North Beach in Bourgas was devastated, with some beach establishments flooded. Waves were reported to five to six metres high.

The strong wind broke off part of the facade of an 18-storey hotel in Bourgas.

Video on November 19 showed a car that had been washed out to sea by the floods on the southern coast of Bulgaria in early September now being washed out of the water by huge waves.

In Lozenets on the southern coast, fishermen at the port were trying to save the boats on which they make a living. An 80-year-old fisherman, having watched the massive surf crashing on the shore, told local media: “I have never seen anything like this before”.

In the Shoumen district, a state of emergency was in force in six municipalities on November 19, while in the Dobrich district, water supply was disrupted because power to pumping stations was cut.

(Photo of Kotsev: jellybeanlover, via Wikimedia Commons)

Please support The Sofia Globe by signing up to become a subscriber to our page on Patreon:

Become a Patron!

The Sofia Globe staff

The Sofia Globe - the Sofia-based fully independent English-language news and features website, covering Bulgaria, the Balkans and the EU. Sign up to subscribe to's daily bulletin through the form on our homepage.