Ifrc - hungary romania ukraine floods (appeal 13/01) - situation report 1 (02/04/2001)

2 April, 2001

appeal no. 13/01; Revised budget
situation report no. 1
period covered: 9 - 28 March, 2001

The Hungarian, Romanian, and Ukrainian national societies, with the support of
the Federation, have mounted an effective and professional response to the floods.
The positive role played in coordinating disaster response efforts with the
authorities has raised the overall profile of the Red Cross and Red Crescent, in turn
facilitating fundraising for the immediate needs as well as reinforcing the ongoing
traditional activities. The experience gathered by the branches in the affected areas
will be useful for transferring knowledge to other branches in each country. While
the government authorities shift their focus to repairing infrastructure in the
coming months, the task of meeting the basic needs of the beneficiaries will
increasingly fall to the Red Cross and Red Crescent and other humanitarian actors,
and further support for this appeal will be critical to meetings these needs.

This Situation Report includes a revised budget for Romania and Hungary
(attached), and with this report Preliminary Appeal no. 13/00 is now considered a
full appeal.

The context
Tens of thousands of people in north-eastern Hungary and north-western Romania have been uprootedas Central Europe faced serious floods in early March. Forced to flee for safety in a sudden exodus,some 30,000 people left their homes with little more than they could carry. Most found shelter incommunity buildings and with host families in other communities. In the Ukraine, the combination ofrapidly melting snow and heavy rain caused the Tisa river and its tributaries (the Borzhava, Latoritsiaand Uzh) to rise to record levels, resulting in flooding in the Beregovo, Vinogradovo, Irshava, Rakhiv,Tyachiv and Khust Districts. Entire communities were forced from their homes, raising fears for thefuture well being of the population. Reports indicate some 33,539 houses were flooded, out of which1,705 are considered beyond repair. appeal no. 13/01; Hungary, Romania, Ukraine: Floods To respond to the needs and to support the respective national societies, the Federation launchedAppeal no. 13/01 on 9 March, 2001. CHF 150,000 was allocated from the Federation’s DisasterRelief Emergency Fund (DREF) to immediately begin the delivery of food parcels to the intendedbeneficiaries, with CHF 50,000 supporting action in each country. Latest events
Hungary l
The immediate disaster response responsibility was assumed and co-ordinated by the Hungarian
authorities, civil protection and rescue teams and other disaster response bodies. Enough professional
human resources were available as well as the means of conducting the operations. Rescue operations
were effectively managed, the possible outbreaks of disease was minimized, and flood control
measures/actions functioned very well, limiting potential damage.
Following the cutting of the main road in the flood prone area water level has decreased and the Tisariver has receded. As soon as the settlements were accessible the governmental disaster managementunits immediately began to collect dead livestock and disinfected houses, yards and roads. Most of theevacuees have returned to their homes and started to assess their losses. The government has set up areconstruction committee to collect information on infrastructure housing damage. The governmenthas indicated that efforts will be made to build replacements housing or repair damage by September,2001. Damage to agricultural land will preclude cultivation this year, leaving most of the population in theflood affected area without their main source of income. The government, through localmunicipalities, has requested the civil society sector to play an active role in providing basic livingassistance to victims of the flood. Romania l
From 3-8 March the floods swept over 11 districts (Alba, Botosani, Bihor, Bistrita, Cluj, Harghita,
Hunedoara, Maramures, Satu-Mare, Salaj and Suceava). Some 175 communities were affected, close
to 4,000 families, and 13,000 fields. Some 4,500 people were forced to leave their homes for several
As in Hungary, the response during the emergency phase was lead by the competent designatedauthorities and catastrophe intervention teams. The immediate response was successful, with nodeaths and limited damage to infrastructure. The disinfecting process has been completed in all theaffected areas. To date most of the evacuees have returned to their homes, with some 300 people stillaccommodated with relatives and neighbours. Most of the flood victims have lost their food reservesand will not be able to cultivate their lands.
Ukraine l
While some 13,769 people were evacuated as of 22 March, many others expressed reluctance to leave
their homes for fear of being robbed. Helicopters, boats and trucks for the rescue and delivery of relief
items were provided by the Ministry of Emergency Situations. Those evacuated have been hosted by
schools, kinder gardens and medical social rooms of the Red Cross. The Ukrainian Government is
focusing its efforts on providing relief to 13 affected districts of the Zakarpattya Region. In addition,
reconstruction work has started on major infrastructure facilities, including sewerage stations and
Red Cross/Red Crescent action
Hungarian Red Cross l
The Hungarian Red Cross (HRC) has been actively working together with the governmental
co-ordination body in rescue operations and supplied the victims with the most urgent needed items
from the HRC regional disaster preparedness warehouses, including: mattresses, food and hygiene
appeal no. 13/01; Hungary, Romania, Ukraine: Floods items (valued at CHF 33,500) and DP kits (food and hygiene items valued at CHF 31,600). Readymade food parcels from the HRC’s emergency stock were immediately distributed by the Szabolcsbranch to the flood affected or evacuated population. To facilitate the operation and reliefdistributions, a 1,300 sqm warehouse was rented by the Szabolcs Red Cross branch, and two truckswere contracted to deliver relief items to the people in need. The HRC has also been distributing thefollowing (donated by individuals and businesses): tens of thousands of bottles of mineral water,hygiene items, mattresses and blankets, food items (canned meat, pasta, instant soup, sugar, rice andvegetable oil), medication, baby food and diapers, clothes, footwear, plastic household items, andplastic mats (these local contributions are not reflected on the attached list of contributions). TheHRC branches have also established partnership agreements with the communities affected, therebyenhancing and increasing support.
Romanian Red Cross l
The Romanian Red Cross (RRC) played a significant role during the emergency as the primary
partner with the government in distributing assistance from their own resources (11 DP stock
warehouses in the country and one main warehouse in Bucharest) to some 15,000 beneficiaries
located in 11 districts. One water purification unit has been working in the district of Maramures
since 5 March. CHF 3,200 was released from the RRC disaster fund and sent to the Maramures
branch within 24 hours following the start of the flooding to purchase food and mineral water. A
truckload of relief supplies including sugar, vegetable oil, rice, canned meat, clothing, blankets,
detergent and soap (valued at some CHF 33,000) was immediately distributed to 1,600 severely
affected people in the village of Cosbuc in the Bistrita Nasaud District.
Ukraine Red Cross l
In coordination with the Ukrainian Red Cross Society (URCS), the Federation supported the timely
delivery of urgently needed food and non-food items to the flood victims. The disaster preparedness
stock of the Zakarpattya Red Cross Organisation (created with ECHO-funded support) consisting of
300 mattresses, 300 pillows, 900 blankets, 900 bed linen, 900 towel packs, 300 hygiene parcels, 300
folding beds, 300 medical kits, 10 heaters, 200 water cylinders, 2 petrol electric generators and 10
tents was distributed during the first days of disaster. Within the first two weeks two assessments
were carried out; the first one was initiated by the Zakarpattya Red Cross and the second by a joint
mission of the Federation and the URCS. The assessments focused on the most urgent needs of flood
victims, indicating that the most urgent needs were water purification facilities, hygiene and food
supplies, clothes and rubber shoes, medicine and disinfecting materials. Since then the operation has
focused on the procurement and distribution of 3,000 disinfecting cartridges for wells and 3,000
hygiene parcels in the Zakarpattya oblast. The Danish Red Cross has supported the operation by
providing 25 mt of clothes (bilaterally) for men, women and children. Keflex antibiotics (valued at
CHF 36,000) were donated by a local Hungarian corporation through the Hungarian Red Cross to
In addition to the international appeal launched by the Federation, the URCS launched their own localappeal addressing the neighboring countries and the Red Cross branches. Support to this appeal hasconsisted of the following: 16 tonnes of food, clothing, shoes, and medicine from the Oblast RedCross organizations; the Swiss Red Cross provided two trucks of food and hygiene supplies andclothes; the Embassy of Ukraine in Slovakia provided clothes, shoes and disinfecting material; andthe Slovakian Red Cross provided food, clothes, shoes and disinfecting material.
Outstanding needs
Hungary l
An estimated 17,500 people in 20 villages will need further assistance in the coming 1-3 months. As
many of the evacuees are returning to their homes, the Hungarian Red Cross branch in Szabolcs has
recommended adapting the assistance rendered to meet the changing needs, with a focus on a one-off
food parcel distribution in villages where houses could be saved but all the crops and livestock were
lost, while in those villages which were entirely inundated food and hygiene parcels, bed linen and
appeal no. 13/01; Hungary, Romania, Ukraine: Floods blankets will be distributed on two occasions. Furniture and basic house appliances are also neededfor those families who have lost everything.
Romania l
Once the emergency phase is over the government and local authorities will concentrate their
resources towards the repair of infrastructure. The Romanian Red Cross plans to provide assistance to
15,000 people in the 11 districts affected by distributing food parcels of basic items three times in the
next three months.
Ukraine l
There remains considerable demand for in-kind donations as well as financial support. Food supplies,
hygiene and disinfectant materials, water purification, medical items, clothes, and shoes are also
needed. The relief operation in Zakarpattya is planned to continue through the summer months. Cold
weather conditions, difficult living conditions, and contaminated drinking water have resulted in an
increasing number of people in need for medical treatment.
See Annex 1 for details. To date the appeal has been 46% covered. Funds are urgently needed toenable the Red Cross societies of Hungary, Romania, and the Ukraine to continue to provideassistance to those affected by the floods in the coming 1-3 months. The appeal budget has beenslightly revised to reflect current needs, with the total amount of the revised budget increased to CHF2,185,764.
This and other reports on Federation operations are available on the Federation’s website:
appeal no. 13/01; Hungary, Romania, Ukraine: Floods BUDGET SUMMARY (Revised)
Hungary, Romania and Ukraine Floods
APPEAL No. 13/2001
appeal no. 13/01; Hungary, Romania, Ukraine: Floods Hungary, Romanian and Ukraine Floods
APPEAL No. 13/2001
REQUESTED IN APPEAL CHF ----------------------------------------> 2,185,764

Source: http://www.ifrc.org/docs/appeals/01/130101.pdf

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