Russia Hit By Spring Floods

Russia is witnessing a bad spell of spring floods this year, mostly due to the snowy winter and the April rise in temperatures. The most flooded areas are the basin of the Tobol river in the Urals and the Altai territory, in Southern Siberia. Emergencies Minister Sergei Shoigu assures that the situation is closely controlled by the government and the emergencies ministry. The president, the cabinet and parliament are updated on flood developments every 24 hours, Shoigu told the State Duma, or the lower house of parliament, at today's session. The ministry has set up quick-reaction teams in the Central, Volga, Urals, Siberian and Far-Eastern districts of the Russian Federation, and allocated 80 million rubles for repairs and clean-up operations. Some 240,000 rescuers, 21,000 units of technical equipment, and 191 aircraft have been placed on high alert. As of today, 320 tons of explosives have already been used for the elimination of ice blockages on rivers.

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