BELGRADE, Serbia-Montenegro – The Danube reached record high levels in Romania, Serbia and Bulgaria on Thursday, flooding fertile farmland as authorities in southeastern Europe considered ordering evacuations. More than 3,000 police, military and civilian workers monitored dams in Romania, with dozens of communities ready to evacuate after weeks of spring runoff combined with heavy rain. ‘We are going through an unprecedented situation,’ said Madalin Mihailovici, director of the Agency for Romanian Waters. ‘Romania has never had such water levels.’ Rivers were expected to rise higher in the coming days, and hundreds had already fled the western Romanian village of Gataia, which flooded after the Barzava River burst its banks, officials said. In Bulgaria, authorities declared a crisis in all 22 communities along the country’s 280-mile stretch of the Danube, which reached a record high level of 30.8 feet in the northwestern city of Vidin, prompting authorities to declare a state of emergency and to prepare the city of 50,000 for a possible evacuation. Women, children leave Dozens of women and children had already left for safer ground, Bulgarian national radio reported, and Mayor Ivan Tsenov ordered the evacuation of a hospital and an orphanage. […]

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