Muddy waters were beginning to recede in parts of Rumania today (May 24) after torrential rains brought widespread floods.
Muddy waters were beginning to recede in parts of Rumania today (May 24) after torrential rains brought widespread floods. An estimated 200 people have been killed, and some 265,000 are said to be homeless. In Transylvania, central Rumania, floodwaters reached to the rooftops at the height of the flooding, and people perched on them waiting for amphibious vehicles and helicopters to come to their rescue.
The floods inundated some 725,000 hectares (1,812,000 acres) of farmland, killed thousands of farm animals, destroyed 9,300 houses, and left another 65,000 under water.
Thousands of soldiers were mobilised to help people fight the floodwaters-at Rimicu-Vicea in Transylvania thousands of civilians and troops worked to build a three-kilometre dyke to protect the town's furniture factory. An eight-kilometre (five-mile) dyke was completed at Galati, Rumania's biggest iron and steel centre to the east of Transylvania at the weekend. But by May 24 neither this town nor nearby Braila, a major grain-shipping centre, were out of danger.
The Danube, which forms Rumania's border with Yugoslavia and Bulgaria, was continuing to rise along its course, except for the section downstream from Braila.
A flood-crest was moving down the river Prut on May 24, to join the Danube near Galati, and was expected to reach the delta area within the next few days.
Galati was also threatened by the waters of the Siret, another Danube tributary.
Reports reaching Vienna (May 24) said that at least 840 bridges had been hit by the floods, and 1,100 kilometres (about 686 miles) of main road were still impassable.