Southern Czech city under water

Floods in Prachatice, Photo:CTK

It's not just Prague that is having to cope with floods. Torrential rains have meant that a state of emergency has spread even to the far north of the country along the River Elbe. But much of the most serious flooding has been in the south, near the Czech Republic's borders with Austria and Germany. The centre of the historic town of Cesky Krumlov is entirely under water, as is the region's biggest city Ceske Budejovice, which has faced a series of flood waves. Earlier Radio Prague's David Vaughan talked to Barbora Tosnerova, who lives in the centre of Ceske Budejovice.

Floods in Prachatice, Photo:CTK
"Right now the situation looks pretty serious. The centre of the town is full of water, flooding the main streets and also the main square. There are helicopters over the town, there are checkpoints around the centre of the town and you can't drive through. Some parts of the town have been cut off. Most shops are closed, only some food stores are open."

And a lot of people have been evacuated, haven't they?

"Yes, I think the number of people evacuated is now in the hundreds, maybe a few thousand."

And what's the situation for you yourself?

"I'm fine because I live in the part of the town that the water has not entered yet, and I don't think it's going to get here, although we are just five hundred metres from the centre."

But I gather that people who have been evacuated have been moved in with you for the time being, haven't they?

"Yes, we've got a family, an extended family, with adult children and grandchildren. They live exactly next to the river in the centre, so they already had problems last week and they are having problems today so they have moved into our place, and they are going to stay until the water goes down."

And are people generally in good spirits?

"I'm quite surprised because it seems that the atmosphere is pretty relaxed. People are just facing the problems and trying to cope with it. In general everything is pretty well organized. People obey when they are told to evacuate. That's the way it seems to me."

And so you think the police and authorities have coped quite well?

"Yes, exactly. It's organized. We keep having reports on TV on radio. They always announce if they are going to switch off the power. They inform you where you can get water. So I think that everything's pretty well organized."

And do you have any idea of the extent of the damage that's been caused by these floods?

"Absolutely no idea. The damage looks huge. It's not just houses and private property, but mainly infrastructure."

So there's mud everywhere, roads have been damaged. Things like that?

"Yes, and water works and things like that."