Powerful hailstorm hits impoverished north-eastern tip of Hungary

Publié: 23 juin 2016 14:04 CET

By Andreea Anca, IFRC

Hundreds of homes need swift rooftop and window repair after a powerful hailstorm hit the north-eastern part of Hungary on 21 June.

According to the Hungarian Red Cross (HRC) on the ground, lumps of ice caused significant damage as they fell on the rooftops of 667 houses and cars in a cluster of villages in Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg County, affecting an estimated 1,956 people.

The immediate needs are timber, tarpaulins and dehumidifiers to temporarily fix people`s homes, prevent further damage and support disaster preparedness as weather forecasts predict further rainfall this season. 

HRC staff and volunteers are preparing for the recovery of 200 households in the villages of Rozsaly, Garbolc, Nagyhodos, Mehtelek and Zajta.

The National Red Cross Society is working in close coordination with the local authorities and other NGOs on the ground involved in the reconstruction efforts. The HRC is also in close contact with the Regional Office for Europe of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in relation to the IFRC potential support to the operation, including allocating financial support from its disaster relief emergency fund to support the response.

Income levels are below average in the region where there is high unemployment. Many of the young people in the villages have left, seeking better work opportunities in other parts of the country.  More than sixty percent of those left behind are elderly people, some living alone.