BELGRADE, May 15. /ITAR-TASS/. The Serbian government has declared a nationwide state of emergency over powerful floods and asked Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, the EU and Slovenia for help in dealing with the devastating aftermaths.Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic is heading the crisis management center. He has described the situation as the biggest water-caused disaster in Serbian history.
“It is the first time in Serbian history,” he said adding that some 161 liters of rain had fallen per square meter in some regions over the past 24 hours. Serbian weathermen have not seen anything like that before.
Banks-bursting rivers are inundating houses and agricultural lands, washing out roads and causing mudslides.
“Our main task is to save the people,” the Serbian prime minister said. The floods have already claimed two human lives. Two more people are missing. Twenty-five percent of schools have been temporarily closed because of bad weather.
Many trains and buses have been cancelled, and transport connection in some Serbian cities has been disrupted. According to weather forecasts, the storm will last until weekend.
Vucic said the scale of the disaster could be seen by the number of forces and vehicles mobilized to fight the floods. The army is helping civil services. Military helicopters and boats are evacuating people from the inundated areas. Effective aid is also coming from the Russian-Serbian humanitarian center based in the southern Serbian city of Nis.