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Danube flood warning in place in Hungary

A flood warning is in place for a 1,200-kilometer section of the River Danube in Hungary, the country’s General Directorate of Water Management (OVF) said on Thursday.

Late on Wednesday, the level of the river in Budapest peaked at 6.93 meters – nearly two meters below the 8.91 meters recorded in 2013, attracting throngs of onlookers to the inundated embankments that have been closed to traffic.

The level remained below the critical 700 centimeters mark, narrowly avoiding the need for a second-level emergency response. The level is expected to recede slowly in the coming days, the OVF said.

Challenges persist in other parts of Hungary as well. The cities of Komarom and Esztergom in the north of the country reported peaks on Wednesday. In Baja, a city in the south, the river is expected to peak around Dec. 30.

Due to the high river levels, the authorities started on Wednesday to drain Lake Balaton, Central Europe’s largest lake in west Hungary. ■

Famagusta Gazette