Turkey

Floods kill 6 in Turkey's Black Sea region

157 people have been rescued so far, says country's Disaster and Emergency Management Authority

Gultekin Yetgin, Tugba Yardimci and Hayati Akcay   | 23.08.2020
Floods kill 6 in Turkey's Black Sea region

GIRESUN, Turkey 

The death toll from flooding in Turkey's Black Sea province of Giresun rose to six Sunday, with a senior official announcing that a second gendarmerie officer’s body had been recovered.

"We have recovered another body of a gendarmerie officer," said Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu, bringing the tally to six.

Search and rescue operations are ongoing in Giresun to find three missing gendarmerie personnel and others, Soylu added.

Heavy rain in Turkey's Giresun

GIRESUN, TURKEY - AUGUST 23: A view of damaged site hit by a flood due to heavy rain in Dereli district of Giresun, Turkey on August 23, 2020. ( Gültekin Yetgin - Anadolu Agency ) 

Turkey's Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) announced that 157 people have been rescued so far.

Some 988 personnel and 288 vehicles were deployed in the rescue efforts, AFAD said in a statement.

It said the roads to 118 villages had been closed, with 35 having been reopened so far. Power had also been restored to 53 residential areas out of 78 where there had been outages due to the floods.

Meanwhile, 9 million Turkish liras ($1.23 million) were sent to the region to help with its recovery.

Earlier, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said as many as 12 people had been injured due to the heavy flooding.

Erdogan also offered his condolences to the families of those who lost their lives.

Soylu said 11 people were reported missing.

The minister, who had arrived at the scene, said earlier that five gendarmerie officers and an excavator operator went missing after a 5-meter (16-foot) high culvert collapsed due to floods in the region. 

The floodwaters demolished 17 buildings and slightly damaged 361, said Environment and Urbanization Minister Murat Kurum in a press briefing at the scene.

Agriculture and Forestry Minister Bekir Pakdemirli said damage assessments were underway and that farmland had suffered less damage than initially estimated.

Efforts continued to rescue people at a wedding hall in Dereli district and guests were being transported to a safe location.

Referring to information received from the state meteorology authority, he said rains, which started Saturday, reached 137 kilograms (302 pounds) of density and affected a number of districts. He warned that 50 to 100 kilograms (110 to 220 pounds) of rainfall is expected in Canakci, Gorele and Dogankent districts on Sunday.

Earlier, Giresun's Governor Enver Unlu told Anadolu Agency that a number of stranded people have not been identified and several people have been rescued by teams. 

He said efforts to get to those who are stranded would begin at first light in the morning and crews are working on opening access to roads while vehicles and heavy equipment are waiting for waters to recede before entering.

Flood waters caused vehicles in Dereli to drift and buildings were also destroyed in the area, while security forces are trying to confirm reports about missing persons, he said.

AFAD announced that rescue teams were dispatched to Giresun during the initial minutes of the natural disaster.

*Writing by Erdogan Cagatay Zontur, Gozde Bayar and Sena Guler

Search and rescue efforts continue in flood-hit Giresun 

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