Floodwaters continue to rise as situation of emergency is declared
Violent storms with heavy rains continue to fall in central Europe. Prague is facing a potential catastrophe with parts of the historic city destroyed and the levels of rivers rising. A state of emergency has been declared and fifty thousand people have been evacuated as a preventive measure.
The coming hours will be tense in Prague, a city usually thronging with tourists at this time of year, marvelling at its bridges and St. Wenceslas Square. This year, global warming has brought a visitation on the city which has destroyed its tourist trade, as torrents of rain have swollen the rivers in and around the city to bursting point. The present situation is centred on the river Vltava, whose banks could burst at any moment, this being the worst flood the Czech capital has seen since 1954.
In the province of Bohemia, several villages are cut off by the floodwaters. Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla has declared a state of emergency in Prague, Pilsen and Karlovy Vary, the famous baths centre.
In Austria, three people were killed by raging floodwaters yesterday and several communities are isolated, with the rains continuing to fall. The situation is described as critical in Ybbs and Kamp, where dykes are about to burst and along the Danube, where the water level has risen from its habitual 7 metres to nearly 14.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru