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  Thursday, September 19, 2019
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Total of five million cubic metres of mud, rocks and ice has slid into the Valley of Geysers on the Russian Far Eastern Kamchatka Peninsula
A total of five million cubic metres of mud, rocks and ice has slid into the Valley of Geysers on the Russian Far Eastern Kamchatka Peninsula, an official of the Kamchatka regional administration’s environment department told ITAR-TASS on Tuesday. The powerful mudslide has clogged the bed of the Geizernaya River, forming a 60-metre-high dam. The width of the mudslide is about 250 metres, and its length - some 300. A closer look at the site is necessary to elucidate the situation, the official said. The Geizernaya River cannot break through the dam so far. Its level is rising. The river is threatening to flood the geysers that were not affected by the cataclysm. Specialists say the situation’s continuing to develop in this way can leave a lake in the place of the Valley of Geysers, a unique tourist site and a nature park. The regional administration will begin on Tuesday consultations on the fate of the valley that is a main attraction of the Kamchatka Peninsula. A regional emergencies commission will review the situation on Wednesday. The Valle of Geysers has been closed for visits. Travel agencies will have to change their programmes offered to clients. The overwhelming mudslide hit the valley on Sunday. It destroyed two out of three helicopter landing pads and all buildings in the lower valley. There were 25 people in the valley at the time of the natural disaster. All have been evacuated, without injuries. “In fact, the Valley of Geysers has been destroyed, but it is too early to say that it cannot be restored,” the press service of Russia’s environmental oversight agency Rosprirodnadzor said.
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