Slovakia – Floods Cause Fatality and Prompt Evacuations

Days of heavy rain caused flooding in several areas of Slovakia, causing 1 fatality and prompting evacuations.

Floods in Slovakia, October 2020. Photo: HaZZ

The Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute (SHMÚ) said that the rain was brought by an area of low pressure which moved from the central Mediterranean, through the Balkans, the Carpathians and over Poland.

In a 48 hour period to 14 October, Košická Belá municipality in Košice-okolie District in the Košice Region recorded 123.1 mm of rain. In a 24 hour period to 15 October, Piesok in Modra municipality in the Bratislava Region recorded 65.5 mm and Kľak in the Žarnovica District, Banská Bystrica Region recorded 69.7 mm.

The heavy rain caused several rivers to break their banks, in particular the Hornád river in the Košice Region. Levels of the Hornád river in the city of Košice jumped from around 1 metre on 12 October to 4.17 metres on 14 October, which is well above the highest warning mark (level 3) of 4 metres.

Hornád river at Košice, October 2020. Image: SHMÚ

Firefighters responded to over 250 interventions during the severe weather, including rescue and evacuation of around 60 people in the Košice Region. The worst affected areas were the districts of Spišská Nová Ves and Gelnica in Košice according to the country’s Fire and Rescue Service (HaZZ).

Other badly affected areas as of 15 October were Revúca and Zvolen in Banská Bystrica Region and Prešov and Poprad in Prešov Region. One fatality was reported in Trencín Region as a result of flooding.

As of 16 October the Nitra river at Nové Zámky in Bratislavský región and the Morava river at Kopčany and at Moravský Svätý Ján in Bratislavský región, were still above the highest danger mark (level 3).

Also as of 16 October, a yellow (second level) warning was in place for heavy rain for the whole country, along with several flood warnings including 5 level 3 warnings.

Hydrological warnings in Slovakia as of 16 October 2020. Image: SHMÚ