Floodwaters have ravaged large areas of Rumania in the past ten days, damaging homes, destroying crops and bringing industry to a standstill.
AVs of flooded area (2 shots)
CU & GV of ??? waters through countryside (6 shots)
GV & CU People repairing sand-bagged riverbanks (3 shots)
GV People rescuing stranded house-holders & babies (3 shots )
GV Destroyed bridge & damaged countryside ( 2 shots )
Initials BJB/1655 BJB/1705
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Background: Floodwaters have ravaged large areas of Rumania in the past ten days, damaging homes, destroying crops and bringing industry to a standstill.
The country's principal waterway, the Danube, and hundreds of its tributaries have burst their banks following more than a week of intense rain in Rumania, Austria and southern Germany. The Danube's floodwaters have already severely affected regions of Hungary and Yugoslavia on their eastward journey to the Black Sea.
The Rumanian Communist Party executive committee has convened a number of emergency sessions, and President Nicolae Ceausescu has taken personal control of emergency operations to salvage the country's sodden grain harvest.
No casualties have been reported as yet, although many villages and homes have been swept away by the surging waters. Troops and other services are on full alert to help out with evacuation and dam-construction. Thousands of farmers and towndwellers have joined together to hand-reap the threatened harvest...for in many areas, the ground is too muddy for combine-harvesters to be used.
The disaster is the worst of its kind to hit Rumania in the past five years. In 1970, over two hundred people died in similar floods.
The Rumanian government news agency, Agerpres, has reported that tens of thousands of hectares (acres) of wheat and vegetables are already underwater. After losing nearly one-third of the planned grain crop last--through a combination of rain, drought and inefficiency--further losses this year could present Rumania with serious difficulties.
To counter this possibility, the Rumanian government on Sunday (13 July) announced sharp price increases for a wide range of goods in preparations for an austerity programme. Although the price increases were not officially linked with losses in harvest or production, a Communist Party announcement called on workers to overcome the flood damage by the end of the year.