July 9, 2012 - Russian Flood Kills Over 170: President Vladimir V. Putin declared a national day of mourning and promised financial compensation for the victims of flash floods in southern Russia on Sunday, as Interior Ministry officials said the number of people killed had risen to more than 170.
Mr. Putin toured the deluged region by air on Saturday evening, flying over towns that were inundated by rivers of muddy water churning through the streets, submerging cars and ravaging buildings. “Like a tsunami,” Mr. Putin said. Pictured above, an undertaker’s office in Krymsk.
Questions about whether official negligence or misconduct had played a role in the disaster quickly came to the fore. The federal Investigative Committee said it had opened a criminal inquiry and would examine the authorities responsible for emergency preparedness to determine if more should or could have been done to prevent the deaths.
But officials were quick to rule out the possibility that the flooding in the hardest-hit town, Krymsk, had been made worse by water released from a local reservoir.
Mr. Putin said that Monday would be a national day of mourning for the flood victims and for 14 Russians who died Saturday in a bus crash in Ukraine. The victims of the crash were making a religious pilgrimage to a monastery. Click the link below for the complete story. (Credits: The New York Times and Getty Images).
The Master of Disaster