Romania not out of winter weather woods yet: PM scolds local authorities over ‘brandy and pork’ distractions

Heavy weather conditions are not likely to continue to afflict Romanians in the following week, but the authorities are having a hard time keeping up with the wind and massive snow falls that have taken place so far.

Some 17 locations in Constanta and Tulcea counties have been disconnected from the power supply network, and all Black Sea ports were closed down this morning more than 36 hours after it was decided that all vessel maneuvers will cease due to the strong wind.

The National Meteorology Administration (ANM) issued a  code yellow warning for several counties in the South-Eastern area of the country, valid until tonight (December 20 ) at 20:00. The wind is expected to reach 60-70 km per hour in the affected areas. Orange code warnings have also been announced for Braila, Buzau, Ialomita, Galati and Vrancea counties. Vrancea and Buzau remained in an orange code alert state until this evening (December 19 ).

The traffic is now open at the Giurgiu-Ruse border point with Bulgaria, but only for personal cars and tourist buses, not for cargo transporters, according to Cornel Vasilache, spokesperson with the Giurgiu County Police Inspectorate (IPJ), quoted by Agerpres.

However, official ANM forecasts are optimistic.  “Based on our models, we estimate that in the following ten days it will snow, but we will not be dealing with a severe situation,” stated Ioan Sandu, ANM Manager.

In the meantime, Prime Minister Victor Ponta took quite a paternalistic approach to his relationship with the local authorities, scolding several prefects over their alleged excessive interest in talking to the press and in the traditional “brandy and pork” treats of the season.

“First remove the snow, then give interviews,” stated Ponta at the winter command center organized at the Government headquarters. “I’d like to address especially the prefects of Botosani and Neamt counties – I am going to conduct an analysis and see whether the prefects have done their job; but what bothers me is that they first speak publicly and only then get down to work. […] The same goes for the National Company of Motorways and National Roads (CNADNR). This is for the manager there: first remove the snow, then go on TV […],” added Prime Minister Ponta.

In fact, the two prefects were fired on Wednesday and a similar measure is being considered for the CNADNR manager.

Ioana Jelea, [email protected]

(photo source: MAPN)


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