Russia and Kazakhstan Grapple with Unprecedented Spring Flooding

Thu Apr 11 2024
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MOSCOW/ ASTANA: Unprecedented spring flooding has struck regions of Russia and Kazakhstan, causing widespread disruption and displacing thousands of people.

In the Siberian region of Tomsk, rising temperatures have led to rapid melting of snow and ice, resulting in major rivers like the Tom bursting their banks. This flooding has cut off three villages in Tomsk from the regional capital, submerging roads, villages, and houses. Meanwhile, neighboring Kazakhstan has seen around 100,000 people evacuated due to flooding.

The Orenburg region in Russia has been severely impacted, with thousands of residential buildings submerged in water. Authorities in Orenburg have noted that this year’s flood levels have exceeded all historical records, causing significant challenges for local communities. Water levels in the Ural River, which flows through Orenburg, have risen dramatically, reaching 1.3 meters above the critical level.

In Orenburg city, over 400 residential buildings were flooded in just one day, with conditions remaining difficult according to the emergency situations ministry. Rescuers are using inflatable dinghies to reach stranded individuals and deliver essential supplies like bottled water.

Spring floods are common in Russia and Kazakhstan due to the seasonal thawing of ice and snow, but this year’s floods are particularly severe. Rapidly rising temperatures and torrential rain have exacerbated the situation, causing rivers to overflow beyond historical norms. Forecasts indicate that rivers in the Siberian region of Tyumen will continue to rise in the coming days.


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