Turkey: Flood deaths rise to at least 51 as rescuers push on – News Vibe24

    Turkey: Flood deaths rise to at least 51 as rescuers push on - Times of India
    The death toll from severe flooding and landslides along Turkey’s Black Sea coast has risen to at least 51, the country’s emergency and disaster service said on Saturday, as authorities disputed reports that hundreds of people were missing.
    Torrential rains that hit the Black Sea provinces of Bartin, Kastamonu and Sinop on Wednesday caused floods that destroyed homes, tore down at least five bridges, swept away cars and made many roads impassable. The Turkish disaster service AFAD reported that 43 people were killed in Kastamonu, seven in Sinop and one in Bartin.
    Nine people remained in hospital, according to the agency.
    Some residents of Kastamonu said on social media that there were hundreds more missing, a statement also made by an opposition lawmaker. However, the provincial governor’s office said reports of about 250 unidentified bodies were untrue. It was not immediately clear how many people could be missing from the floods.
    Rescue teams and search dogs continued the arduous task of trying to locate residents. AFAD said 5,820 personnel, 20 rescue dogs, 20 helicopters and two search aircraft were at the scene.
    About 2,250 people were evacuated across the area due to the floods, many of whom were evacuated by helicopter. Many are temporarily housed in dormitories.
    Climatologists are adamant that climate change is leading to more extreme weather events as the world warms by burning coal, oil and gas.
    However, experts in Turkey said that intervention in the rivers and improper construction also contributed to the huge damage from the floods.
    Geologists say the construction narrowed the riverbed and the surrounding alluvial floodplain of the Ezine River in the Bozkurt area of ​​Kastamonu, where the damage was most severe, from 400 meters (1,312 feet) to 15 meters (49 feet). Houses were also built along the waterfront.
    During heavy rainfall, limited current can only overflow. Videos posted by residents showed water flowing downstream in Bozkurt as buildings and streets flooded. A geologist, Ramazan Demirtas, explained the narrowing of the riverbed on Twitter and said people were to blame for this week’s disaster.
    In Sinop, the floodwaters completely wiped out the village of Babakai, leaving demolished houses, damaged bridges and rubble. A five-storey apartment building built on the riverbed was destroyed. Turkish broadcaster CNN Turk showed only one front door and one wall left.
    Across the Black Sea, days of heavy rainfall have also caused flooding in large parts of southern Russia. Authorities in the Krasnodar region said on Saturday that more than 1,400 homes had been flooded after storms swept through the area this week. About 108,000 residents of 11 settlements were left without electricity.
    Russia’s regional emergency headquarters said more than 1,530 people had been evacuated. The resort town of Anapa on the Black Sea was one of the worst affected. Officials have warned that heavy rains are expected for another two days.
    Floods hit flames in southern Turkey that destroyed forests in the coastal provinces of Mugla and Antalya, which are popular with tourists. At least 16 people were killed in the fires – including eight emergency workers as their firefighting plane crashed on Saturday – and thousands of residents and tourists were forced to flee.

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