Floods Take Toll on Poland

Whilst the flood risk seemed to have rescinded by the weekend of 21st May, major damage occurred across southern Poland, and 8 lives have been lost to date.

Although Zakopane did not suffer to the degree of towns further upstream, one 85-year-old lady perished after apparently slipping into a swollen brook.

Alarm bells were initially set ringing on Sunday, when the Mayor of Cracow declared a state of emergency when the River Vistula reached a critical level. Matters reached their worst on Tuesday - the highest for the city in 40 years. Preparations for evacuation were made in several Cracovian districts, whilst other towns were water-logged, leading to large scale evacuations.

There was concern that June's presidential elections would have to be postponed owing to the state of national emergency. However, provided that the rains do not return - a factor not ruled out - delays are unlikely.


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