3 dead as severe floods leave trail of destruction across northern Armenia

By Mark Dovich

At least three people died and two others went missing Sunday after days of strong rainstorms caused rivers in northern Armenia to overflow their banks, sweeping away bridges and roads and inundating nearby communities.

At least 265 people in Armenia’s Lori and Tavush regions have been evacuated so far. As of 7:30 p.m., search and rescue workers continued to comb through the destruction, the result of Armenia’s worst flooding in decades.

Over the weekend, Lori and Tavush received 40-60% of the precipitation they normally get in a month, Armenia’s Environment Ministry said. That caused rivers in the area to rise to levels unseen in 65 years.

At least 6 bridges and 138 buildings across those two regions collapsed or were otherwise damaged, according to updated figures from Armenia’s Interior Ministry. Flash floods also washed away sections of two key highways, forcing Armenia to close its main border crossing with Georgia and suspend rail service between Yerevan and Tbilisi.

Alongside other top officials, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan traveled Sunday to the mining town of Alaverdi, one of the hardest hit communities, to meet with residents and personally oversee an emergency government task force.

leave a reply