Water under the bridge: Pisek native remembers the heavy floods


Even though this year's August weather has been hot and sunny so far, things could not have been more different exactly two years ago, when many towns in the Czech Republic were affected by heavy floods. The waters didn't reach Prague until August 13, a couple of days after dozens of towns and villages in the south of the country had already found themselves under water. Edita Kucerova, who lives in the beautiful South-Bohemian town of Pisek recalls these events.

"It rained a lot in the Sumava Mountains. The river Otava which runs through Pisek takes also water from another river and all the water came down to Pisek. The situation culminated in August 12 and 13, 2002."

Where were you personally? How did it look like?

"I was in Pisek with my family. We were lucky because our house is on a hill. So it was not damaged, nor destroyed, nothing happened. But when we went down town we saw what's happening - all the people being evacuated etc. My father worked in a place from which he couldn't get home. So he had to stay at work that night."

Which structures were most affected? How about the famous ancient Stone Bridge?

"Of course, the Stone Bridge was completely under water - that was something absolutely terrible for us. We were close to the Otava River, but couldn't see the bridge at all. It was completely under water, only some statues were visible. We didn't know what would happen next; if the bridge survives or if it would be very much damaged....The entire left bank of the river, which is quite flat, was flooded for a few hundreds of meters. All the houses, shops, as well as a few schools, Pisek Ice Hockey stadium and two cinemas were flooded."

Can you compare the situation how Pisek looked two years ago, and how it looks now?

"The town looks quite well. The town hall started with the renovations immediately after the floods. There was also a big help of the Army of the Czech Republic. Just a few weeks or months after the floods were the main damages put aside and nowadays you wouldn't see anything except a few signs of how high the water was. You can also go and see some pictures from the floods, but generally the town looks very pretty and you wouldn't see any damage."