MOSCOW, August 26 (RIA Novosti) – Russian Emergency Situations Minister Vladimir Puchkov flew to the Far East on Monday to oversee recovery efforts after devastating floods hit five regions, causing hundreds of millions of dollars in damage.
“The minister and members of the government commission will assess the situation in the flood-hit regions of the Jewish Autonomous Region and the Khabarovsk Territory, [and] perform an aerial survey of the flooded areas,” said ministry spokeswoman Irina Rossius, who confirmed that the minister had arrived.
Puchkov is accompanied by Russia’s chief sanitary official, Gennady Onishchenko, and officials from the Federal Agency for Water Resources, Russia’s Hydrometeorological Center and the All-Russian Center for Disaster Medicine. An additional group of about 70 workers to assist in disaster relief flew aboard the same plane.
Due to the flooding, which has occurred over several weeks, an emergency situation has been declared in four far-eastern regions – the Amur Region, the Jewish Autonomous Region, the Khabarovsk and Primorye territories – as well as in the Siberian republic of Yakutia.