After the Floods: No Illegal Logging has been Discovered in Karlovo region, Inspections are Ongoing

Society » INCIDENTS | September 12, 2022, Monday // 11:04
Bulgaria: After the Floods: No Illegal Logging has been Discovered in Karlovo region, Inspections are Ongoing @BNT

Initial checks show that there is no illegal logging in the Bulgarian region of Karlovo, which has suffered severely from flooding following torrential rains. This was stated on BNT by Eng. Stoyan Toshev, executive director of the Forestry Agency. He added that there are more inspections in the area, together with other institutions, and the final conclusions will be made after their completion.

Here you can find several options on how to help the people affected by the floods in Karlovo region.

"The inspections I started at the very beginning showed that there is no illegal logging, but I cannot be definitive because there are other logging sites that will be inspected. Organizational gaps have been identified that will be corrected," he said.

At the moment, the inspections have not found cut roads that have turned into gutters, but the relief has played its natural role and has helped to divert water to the creeks of the Stryama River, added Eng. Toshev.

"In Karlovo region, in general, it is a calm area, without many signals of violations. Now the attention is focused there. The people who are present with us at the inspections are convinced that these areas are not compromised. The forest areas are well managed. Yes, there are organizational gaps, but in general, some good forest plantations are created that perform their function," he pointed out.

Engineer Toshev commented on satellite photos from the area, which show thinning of the forest in recent years.

"Actually, it is about a nearly 1,000 hectare increase in the forest area, but with young plantations that are not of such density. There have been measures carried out over time, but they have been restored with young plantations," he said.

Eng. Stoyan Toshev added that from the very beginning, the agency's teams have been working on signals from local residents, who direct them to where there is a problem. Inspections are ongoing across the country. He urged people to report whenever they suspect illegal logging.

"I appeal for reports to be submitted because it is important for us to go before or during the commission of the violation, and not after when the arrays have already been cut. We will make it so that we act as quickly as possible in case of a report, so I am appealing for whistleblowing even anonymously. Our goal is to show the public that there is a state. I have no qualms right now going anywhere to check and show even with the media what is happening in the forest", he said.

Reports of illegal logging and poaching can be made by calling 112 or on the "Protect the Forest" (Защити гората) platform.

"An analysis is pending in which areas of the country there is a concentration of violations, and we will concentrate all the power at our disposal to stop these activities there," he added.

Eng. Toshev also commented that in recent years the control in forestry farms in our country has increased significantly. Inspections have increased by about a third, the violations found are not few either. The forest officials are in the field even in the dark hours of the day. The average salary in forestry farms in Bulgaria is about BGN 1,200, which shows that their work is not well paid, believes Toshev.

According to him, the ban on the export of wood in our country has had an effect, although the exported timber is generally not in large quantities.

The water in Karlovo region remains unfit for drinking, disinfection begins in the affected villages

The work to remove the damage from the great flood in the Karlovo region continues.

The water in the entire municipality remains unfit for drinking and cooking, and its use is allowed only for domestic needs. Electricity has been restored almost everywhere, teams are working to restore water supply.

Starting today, disinfection of streets, public buildings and private yards in the villages of Bogdan, Karavelovo and Slatina will begin in order to prevent the spread of infectious diseases, the municipal crisis headquarters reports.

Yesterday, more than 113 units of large, medium and small-sized construction equipment cleared the damage caused by the flood in the villages of Bogdan, Karavelovo and Slatina.

28 trucks, 13 wheeled combined excavators, 4 bulldozers, 4 dozers, 8 crawler excavators, 4 clamps, 20 cutters, 27 bobcats, etc. were working in the riverbeds, on the streets and in private homes in the affected villages.

On the ground yesterday in the affected villages were more than 1,000 volunteers from all over the country, as well as 111 military personnel from the 61st Stryama Brigade and cadets from the National Military University "Vasil Levski" - Veliko Tarnovo and the Higher Air Force School "Georgi Benkovski" - Dolna Mitropolia.

The work of the volunteers and military personnel was coordinated by 22 employees in the municipal administration, reports the crisis headquarters. The distribution center in the Karlovo municipality building is also open throughout the day.

The efforts of the headquarters are primarily aimed at clearing and strengthening the riverbeds in the affected villages. In some places, the sediments reach a height of 4 meters and if they are not removed, there is a danger that in another heavy rain, the villages will be flooded again. The clearing of the streets and private yards continues.

By order of the mayor, Dr. Emil Kabaivanov, all vacations of employees in the municipality of Karlovo have been suspended. The crisis headquarters of the Municipality of Karlovo is in a 24-hour working mode, and yesterday it held a meeting in the presence of the regional governor of the Plovdiv region, Angel Stoev.

The headquarters calls for volunteers from all over the country to contact the Crisis Headquarters and take part in the reconstruction activities of the affected villages.

Bank account for donations:

IBAN: BG81FINV91508416025382

BIC FINVBGSF

PIB AD-KARLOVO BRANCH, GENERAL KARTSOV STREET 6

Holder: Municipality of Karlovo

Payment type code – 44 51 00

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