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Russia. The inhabitants of Iwanowka coped with the flood themselves. Now they have to fight the authorities

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The inhabitants of the village of Ivanovka near Orenburg widened the flood embankment themselves, which could withstand the inflow of water, reports the BBC's Russian section in a Sunday report. It tells about people who are struggling with the effects of flood and with the authorities who do not want to pay high compensation for damaged property.

People standing in a long row and holding hands on a high embankment, with water behind them. Such a recording appeared on social media and shows the inhabitants of the village of Ivanovka, located about 10 kilometers from Orenburg. People are standing on the flood embankment that they built themselves to save themselves and their homes from the flood – writes the website of the BBC's Russian section in a Sunday report.

Tractors arrived, people came with shovels

Earlier, the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry warned residents of the Orenburg Oblast that the flood that hit Orsk would soon reach them as well. Most of the inhabitants of Iwanowka decided not to go anywhere.

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A village resident named Aleksander told the BBC that people, without waiting for help from the services, began to strengthen the banks of the nearby river on one side of the village, where water began to appear. Tractors arrived at the site and people came with shovels. The flood embankment was widened and the water stopped flowing.

– We started to increase the embankment to make it higher and wider. Previously, there was simply a bank of earth, washed away over the years by rains – said Aleksander. – It didn't represent anything. It was ordinary soil that would not withstand heavy water, he added.

Satellite shots of floods in the Orenburg Oblast in RussiaReuters/Maxar Technologies

READ: “Compatriots, leave these areas immediately.”

“Race with water”

The BBC's interlocutor said that the work on the construction of the embankment was a “race with the water, the level of which was constantly rising.” – It was a fight against the elements and we fought directly against the elements. You are standing on an embankment: on one side countless tons of water, on the other a road and a village. Everyone was very concerned and scared, no one knew whether it would succeed or not, confessed Aleksander.

During construction, the embankment began to leak. Then the residents decided to organize “duties” to monitor his condition. They were on duty one by one, also at night. Women prepared meals on site.

Towns near Orenburg under water PAP/EPA/STRINGER

On the night of April 15-16, there were heavy rains in the Orenburg region, but the village of Ivanovka was not flooded. The embankment withstood a two-meter inflow of water. Residents' duties have been “cancelled”.

“I have to replace all the windows”

The BBC interviewee named Anna lives on the outskirts of Orenburg. The area of ​​her house, which was flooded, is 80 square meters. The compensation that the authorities promise to pay will not cover even half of the costs of the damage. – I have to replace all the windows. Even if our house is still habitable, we will have to remove all the plaster, plaster everything again, and re-upholster the ceilings and floors, the woman explained in an interview with the BBC.

She said she had already gone through “all stages of displacing officials.” He cooperates with other people who find themselves in a similar situation. They plan to record appeals to the authorities and demand higher compensation.

– This is a colossal tragedy, not just a flood. Flooding occurs when water enters the garage, and here, in most homes, water is under the roof. It's absolutely everywhere and it's terrifying, Anna confessed.

360 thousand applications

Media in the Orenburg Oblast reported that over 37,000 residents in the region received one-off financial assistance due to flooding of their homes. Almost 360,000 people submitted applications for compensation. In the oblast, approximately 14,000 residential buildings in 70 communes were flooded, and over 20,000 plots were also flooded.

Main photo source: PAP/EPA

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