REMOVING debris and repairing damage caused by Monday’s devastating flood in Vrátna Dolina in Žilina Region will take the Slovak Water Management Company (ŠVP) between two to three months, with the costs estimated at €2 million, Environment Ministry State Secretary Vojtech Ferencz said on July 24.

The ŠVP, which operates under the Environment Ministry, has already started to move heavy equipment into the region. “We’re still waiting for some roads to become passable in order to get as close to Vrátna as possible,” Ferencz told the TASR newswire. “You might already see ŠVP equipment within the perimeter. We’re facing an uneasy task: to clean up the bed of the Varinka River that flows through the village over a stretch of some five kilometres. That will form the bulk of the work.”

ŠVP general director Marián Supek emphasised that the purpose of cleaning the riverbed directly within the village is to protect its inhabitants from further flooding.

“There’s a lot of work to be done,” Supek said. “The five-kilometre stretch has been completely destroyed and our primary task will be to stabilise the banks in order to prevent further mudslides. We’ll also need to reconstruct the streambed to its original state and restore its pre-catastrophe capacity in terms of water flow. We expect the work to take at least two to three months. There’s so much to do that €2 million might even seem like an inadequate sum.”

The soldiers helping out in the Malá Fatra valley of Vrátna Dolina, which was devastated by the flood that swept through it on July 21, will bridge the destroyed road in order to enable the transfer of heavy equipment belonging to Emergency Services, Defence Ministry spokesperson Martina Balleková told TASR. To this end, the armed forces have allocated an armoured vehicle-launched bridge and the necessary personnel. Once the bridging is completed, emergency crews will be able to continue to engage in disaster-relief efforts and to comb the area.

(Source: TASR)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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