PM: Situation Returning to Normal after Floods

The situation on the southern Bulgarian Black Sea coast is returning to normal after torrential rain triggered floods that killed four and caused major damage to property and in infrastructure in the area. “The encouraging thing is that after the rains stopped, the situation is returning to normal, the roads are gradually becoming passable,” Prime Minister Nikolai Denkov told journalists here Wednesday.
He said that food and water has been provided, and “everything necessary for people in distress”.
The competent state institutions and volunteers continue to work to battle the aftermath of the disaster, said the government leader.
The Ministry of Labour and Social Policy and the Social Assistance Agency are now on the ground, visiting the flooded houses, talking to people and explaining to them what steps they can take to get government help, Denkov said.
The flood victims are entitled to a lump sum of BGN 1,512 which is available for damages to houses and other property. In addition to that BGN 2,500 is available for damaged electrical appliances. The Prime Minister said this assistace can be received within 1-2 months.
All-terrain vehicles delivered food and water, provided by the Red Cross and the Tsarevo Municipality, to the flood-hit area. Arrangements have been made for carriage of people and freight, for providing generators and ensuring heavy-duty machines as may be needed, said the government press office. Units of the Armed Forces have been put on standby and are ready to join the efforts to dealing with the consequences of the floods, including units for flood relief, helicopters for aerial search and rescue of the Krumovo airbase and a Spartan aircraft of the Sofia Municipality. Army representatives have been dispatched to the district crisis task force.
An association of producers of non-alcoholic beverages announced donating 60,000 l of mineral water for the people in Tsarevo.
Denkov urged against pointing figures at presumed culprits for the disaster and said that checks are underway and the results will be made public.
On social media, the blame for the magnitude of the disaster is largely put on the local authorities for allowing the filling up of gullies to maximize the market value of land, and thus leaving floodwater with no escape route and flooding huge urbanized areas.
The Prime Minister said: “That was a natural disaster. Precipitation of over 300 l/sq m per 24 hours is very rare. Everywhere it happened, the problems are serious.” He pointed out that the floods also took lives in Greece and Turkiye.
Action will be taken via the Disaster Commission to rebuild the infrastructure. The damage is probably worth tens of millions of leva, said the Prime Minister.
He urged the local authorities to identify their needs quickly and what the government can do for them.
He said that heavy duty machines have already been sent to the affected areas.
He was speaking to the press after attending an observance of the anniversary of the Unification of the Principality of Bulgaria and Eastern Rumelia in 1885.