Continuous, heavy rainfall in mid-May 2014 resulted in extensive flooding in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia.
In Serbia, the floods affected some 1.6 million people and resulted in 51 casualties, of which 23 were due to drowning. Around 32,000 people were evacuated from their homes The majority of evacuees found accommodation with relatives, but some 5,000 required temporary shelters in camps established by the Government and the Serbian Red Cross. Health facilities, schools and agricultural lands were damaged. On 15 May the Government declared a state of emergency for its entire territory. (Govt, 15 Jul 2014)
In Bosnia-Herzegovina, over a million people were affected by flooding, almost 90,000 were displaced, and 25 casualties were recorded. The severe and widespread rains triggered over 3,000 landslides. Floods and/or landslides hit 75,000 houses, of which 25,000 were severely damaged or destroyed, and also caused extensive damage to livelihoods, health and water and sanitation facilities. (IFRC, 21 Jun 2014)
In Croatia, the floods caused widespread power outages, water shortages, damage to the infrastructure, livestock and livelihoods, and displacement. Three people were killed, and, out of the estimated 15,000 people evacuated, more than 7,000 were registered and looked after by the Croatian Red Cross. (IFRC, 30 May 2014)
Flooding was also reported in Romania and Bulgaria (ECHO, 24 Apr 2014).
In May 2014, unprecedented rainfall in Bosnia and Herzegovina affected more than 1 million people (25% of the population), and the resulting heavy flooding caused estimated damages and losses equivalent to nearly 15% of the country’s GDP. In a country where one fifth of the workforce is employed in agriculture, river floods inundated newly-plowed fields and ravaged 81 municipalities, severely disrupting the economy and imperiling livelihoods.
Floods in 2014 have been disastrous for the Western Balkan. UNDP is very glad to present to you the Human Development Report on Disaster Risk Reduction with a specific focus in Western Balkan titled: Risk-Proofing the Western Balkans: Empowering People to Prevent Disasters. Kosovo is frequently affected from floods which lead to tremendous damages and economic losses. Flood early warning system is not functional in Kosovo and Kosovo Institute of Hydrometeorology needs significant support for building technical and human capacity to be able to operationalize the flood early warning system.
“With no warning, the water came at 5am…”
For Zeljko Cejic, an engineer in Banja Luka, the lack of advance notice meant there was no time to plan. His wife Natasa, daughter Sofia (then 6) and son Phillip (3 months) escaped through Sofia’s bedroom window.
“My uncle came and carried me. I remember the water was really dirty and I did not want to drop in because I was afraid I would disappear,” Sophia remembers.
Enhancing hydro-meteorological monitoring in Bosnia & Herzegovina’s Vrbas River Basin
“With no warning, the water came at 5am…”
For Zeljko Cejic, an engineer in Banja Luka, the lack of advance notice meant that wife Natasa and daughter Sofia (then 6), son Phillip (then 3 months) had to escape via Sofia’s bedroom window.
“My uncle came and carried me. I remember the water was really dirty and I did not want to drop in because I was afraid I would disappear.”
This disaster risk financing country note provides an overview of the way Serbia currently finances the costs of natural disasters. Having sufficient access to financial instruments and resources in order to respond to disasters is crucial for building the financial resilience of the country and minimizing the negative impact of natural disasters on Serbia’s economic growth.
The report provides:
•the background and country context, including the recent economic impacts of disasters;
Report calls for building disaster risk into development efforts
Sarajevo, 20 May 2016 – Two years after massive flooding caused widespread devastation and loss of life in the Western Balkans, countries in the sub-region have taken steps to reduce the risk of disasters but more will need to be done to protect people from future destruction, according to the Human Development Report for the Western Balkans, launched here today.
By Eveline Studer, Nicole Clot and Zenebe Uraguchi
A. Situation analysis
Description of the disaster
Heavy floods and landslides in Bosnia Herzegovina shifted minefields and explosive remnants of war (ERW) into inhabited areas. The Belgian Royal Military Academy (RMA) team worked with the Bosnia and Herzegovina Mine Action Centre (BHMAC) to use drone images that would help model the potential locations of some of the many displaced ERWs and mines. These models then were used to narrow down the search radius for demining teams.
Agricultural producers in seven municipalties of eastern Serbia will receive help in the coming months from the European Union – working in partnership with FAO – as part of the EU’s overall flood recovery programme for the country. A day-long workshop taking place here today will review the first phase of the programme’s assistance to agriculture and describe next steps.
Eastern Serbia is home to some of the country’s least developed areas, and many farms there suffered damage from landslides and silting following the 2014 spring floods.
Norwegian Ambassador to BiH Vibeke Lilloe and UN Resident Coordinator Sezin Sinanoglu visited today participants of the rehabilitated milk sub-sector value chain in Zenica-Doboj Canton and the Health Care Centre in Doboj as examples of the UN Floods Recovery Programme activities funded by the Norwegian Government and aimed at economic recovery and rehabilitation of public institution and services they provide.
“Bosnia and Herzegovina needed assistance to recover from the devastating floods in May 2014 and we did our best to help,” said Ambassador Lilloe.
A ceremony has been organised to mark the completion of installation of concrete barriers along the Bosna River in Doboj today. The works were completed under the UNDP project "Support to Flood Recovery and Risk Mitigation in BiH" aiming to mitigate flood risks for 4500 households.
On Friday, November 27th 2015, we marked the completion of rehabilitation of the landslide in the municipality of Vogošća in village Dreskovača, which includes 57 households. Last year's heavy rains caused landslides and resulted in danger of landslides for Dreskovača, and the lack of adequate sewage system significantly increased the risk of landslides.
Description of the disaster
Torrential rainfalls began in Serbia on 13 May 2014, with rainfalls in two days’ time equalling to two months` average precipitation as a result of a low-pressure area that formed over the Adriatic Sea due to polar air from Central Europe meeting with the humid subtropical air of the Mediterranean basin. The floods and landslides caused 51 casualties, 23 of which were people who drowned. A national state of emergency was declared on 15 May 2014 by the Government of Serbia.
Last year’s floods were the worst in 30 years, made even more damaging by a combination of institutional inefficiency and changing weather patterns.
24 November 2015
Rajko Duranovic is one of thousands of homeowners whose lives have been devastated by the floods which hit Bosnia and Herzegovina in May 2014.
Total Funding: $2 million
Project Duration: April 2015-March 2016
Geographic Coverage: Municipalities in the Federation of BiH (FBiH): Domaljevac, Gradačac, Kalesija, Odžak, Travnik and Tuzla Municipalites in Republika Srpska (RS): Bijeljina, Doboj, Lopare, Modriča and Šamac
Implementing Partners: UN Development Program (UNDP), Solidarity Fund of Republika Srpska, Fund for Support to the Areas Affected by Natural Disasters in the FBiH, local governments, Open Network NGO and Hastor Foundation
The local water supply system “Gašića vrelo” in Krupa na Vrbasu, supplying drinking water to 1,300 households in Banja Luka, Kneževo and Čelinac, has been put into operation earlier today. The system was destroyed by the last year’s floods and was repaired as part of the project “Support to Flood Recovery and Risk Mitigation in BiH”, funded by the British Government and implemented by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Following the changing humanitarian landscape in the country and the needs of the beneficiaries after the floods, a revised Emergency Appeal was launched in October 2014. The appeal sought CHF 3.9 million to enable the IFRC Secretariat to support the Red Cross Society of Bosnia and Herzegovina (RCSBiH) to deliver assistance and support to some 57,500 people until April 2015. The revised appeal consisted of programme components which aimed to assist with the normalization of people’s lives in the flood-affected areas and communities.