Eight killed, five missing in floods in Romania

News and Press Release
Originally published
BUCHAREST, Jul 13, 2005 (Xinhua via COMTEX) -- At least eight people were killed and five missing in recent days as floods caused by heavy rains hit large areas of Romania, the Interior Ministry said on Wednesday.

Thousands of people were left homeless in the floods, the worst in more than 40 years, which have now hit 31 of the Balkan country's 41 administrative areas.

An official from the weather service said rainfalls in many areas over the last 10 days "equal the average for an entire year."

The Defense Ministry has sent a large number of troops to rescue hundreds of stranded people in disaster areas.

Prime Minister Calin Popescu Tariceanu, who arrived at an affected area in eastern Romania, said food supplies from state reserves would be sent to flooded counties and the cabinet would approve financial aid on Thursday.

In April and May, floods also hit western Romania, where 3,700 people had to be evacuated from crumbling houses. Meteorologists said more rain was expected.