Romania

ACT Alliance Alert: Floods in South-East Romania

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1. Brief description of the emergency and impact

During the period from 10–14 of September, continuous torrential rains have swept eastern Romania causing massive damages in the south-eastern part of Moldova province. Thousands of villagers have fled their homes with makeshift boats, horse carriages and cars and some scrambled up trees to get away from the rising waters. Thousands more might have to leave their dwellings in the next 2-3 days if flood waters will not withdraw. Soldiers and civil defense workers scrambled to reinforce dykes and build sandbag barriers. However, in some parts the water has soaked dams and embankments and it is impossible to use heavy equipment such as bulldozers to fight the waters. The hardest hit region is the county of Galati, recording the highest number of evacuees and flooded villages but also Braila and Tulcea are seriously affected. Thousands of people are currently accommodated in school buildings, monasteries, hospitals, army tents, sport facilities.

2. Why is an ACT response needed?

Across the region, 1.400 of emergency workers have been deployed round the clock to reinforce defenses and battle the churning waters, trying to consolidate with sandbags dikes and dams along the main rivers eastern Romania. There is also a danger of the increase of water related and water-borne diseases. Local health authorities fear an epidemic that could easily spread after the waters will withdraw. Through the national media, the Ministry of the Interior has appealed to NGO’s and volunteers to assist evacuated people. ACT member AIDRom Emergency Unit has already experience in responding to similar disasters in the country and is also this time ready to provide support.