Floods Sweep Southeast Turkey

The recent flooding in Turkey is the worst to hit the mainly-Kurdish regions in the last 50 years and heavier rain is predicted for Turkey in the upcoming days.

Floods Sweep Southeast Turkey

Floodwaters hit the city of Batman on Wednesday evening, officials said, when rivers swollen by torrential rains swamped streets and toppled buildings, killing 11 people and triggering a major rescue operation.

The death and missing toll in the flood-hit Southeast is growing. The prime ministry reported 35 dead and eight missing, while there are 278 damaged houses in Diyarbakir and 540 in Sanliurfa. There are 1,389 animals also reported to have died.

Turkey is now questioning the causes of the flood. A true picture of the flood demonstrates that allocating water courses at residential areas paved the way for the disaster. The Cinar district of Diyarbakir took the brunt of the flood because the water course in the district could not hold the rain waters.

The neighborhood named Cumhuriyet became a pond in just 10 minutes. Similar torrents occurred in the region in 1974 and 1981; however, since there were no residential areas near the water course, such disasters did not occurred. Chairman of the Diyarbakir Chamber of Construction Engineers Tansel Onal emphasized, "The place where there is a neighborhood today is registered as a water course in the public waterworks administration, but as a built-up area in the municipality. Another place hit hard by the disaster, Cayirbasi Brook, was declared a built-up area with a building scheme endorsed by the Bank of Construction in 1975. In those schemes, no brook exists; moreover the water course is shown as a road.

Cause Irregular Settlement

Thirty-five people have reportedly died in the flooding. The extent of damages in the cities showed unorganized settlement in the region. Experts on environment and roads and utilities blamed the municipalities, while the mayors defended themselves by calling the events a "natural disaster."

Prime Ministry Issued a Circular

After similar disasters happened last year in Rize and Trabzon, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan issued a circular to stop people from suffering the consequences of such disasters. According to the circular, Public Waterworks Administration is going to take security precautions in the ground works of cities, districts and any sort of residential areas. Creeks will on no condition be covered except those that the directorate general of public waterworks administration gives permission to do so.

Officials from the Turkish Oil Refineries Inc. stated that production had to be stopped because of the flood in Batman. When the water recedes, they would make an assessment of damage which would be followed by the reactivation of the refinery, officials said.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16