Monday, 4 January 2021

Sisak-Moslavina County Head Calls for Declaring State of Disaster

ZAGREB, 4 January, 2021 - Sisak-Moslavina County head Ivo Zinic said on Sunday that the state of disaster should definitely be declared following the 6.2 magnitude earthquake that hit the county on December 29.

"The county head can only declare a state of emergency following natural disasters based on assessments by the towns and communities affected. I believe this earthquake was much more destructive and that the state of disaster should be declared," Zinic told the N1 broadcaster.

The December 29 earthquake claimed seven lives and caused extensive material damage in the areas of Petrinja and Sisak in Sisak-Moslavina County.

Zinic noted that the insufficient quantity of container homes and camper vans was the main problem at present.

"We have received 13,272 requests and inspected 3,972 facilities. There are around 250 camper vans in the field and the needs are much greater. We expect 1,500 mobile homes to be necessary. Their installation will take ten more days because we can install 20-50 mobile homes per day," he said.

The HAC motorway operator said on Sunday that it would not be collecting the road toll on the Zagreb-Sisak motorway until January 31.

HAC stopped collecting the road toll on December 29 to enable emergency services to reach the quake-hit communities in Sisak-Moslavina County, deciding initially not to collect it until January 4.

Sunday, 3 January 2021

County Prefect: Reports on Quake Damage on 8,928 Buildings So Far Received

ZAGREB, 3 January, 2021 - Of the 19 cities and municipalities in Sisak-Moslavina County, Petrinja, Glina, Sisak and Lekenik suffered the biggest damage, and Donji Kukuzari, Sunja, Hrvatska Kostajnica, Majur, Dvor, Topusko, Gvozd and Marinska Ves sustained extensive damage in the 29 December quake.

The county prefect Ivo Zinic explained on Sunday that so far, the damage was reported on 8,928 buildings and structures.

Of them, 20% are buildings completely destroyed or out of use anymore. Also, a quarter of the inspected buildings will need additional checks, and 54% of buildings checked by experts received a green label, which means that they can be used.

Reports on damaged buildings are still being received and the number of destroyed and damaged buildings will definitely rise, the prefect said at a news conference.

We have set up five mobile teams that are visiting settlements and villages to establish a state of affairs and see what the population needs, he added.

"A difficult situation is ahead of us, people are depressed, we will also organise psychological assistance," Zinic said.

825 small businesses, a third of family-run farms suffer damage by quake

Of 2,000 small businesses in the county, 825 have reported extensive damage, he said.

Furthermore, 700 companies and 3,000 out of 9,000 family-run farms have also sustained damage, he said.

When it comes to educational institutions, out of the 13 secondary schools in the county, six are unusable, and a preschool institution in Petrinja was destroyed.

Retirement homes in the area were also evacuated.

All healthcare institutions are providing services, although some of them are now placed in containers.

On 29 December, the earthquake measuring 6.2 on the Richter scale, that hit the area of Petrinja, some 50 kilometres south of Zagreb, killed seven people in the county, and a number of people were injured.

"The intensity of this destructive earthquake has been estimated at VII-IX degrees on the EMS scale. The quake was felt across the country. Large-scale damage is expected," the Croatian Seismology Service said on its Twitter profile immediately after the quake.

Sunday, 3 January 2021

2.7 Magnitude Quake Shakes Zagreb (January 3, 09:19)

ZAGREB, 3 January, 2021 - An earthquake measuring 2.7 on the Richter scale shook Zagreb at 0919 hours Sunday, the Croatian Seismological Survey said on Sunday morning.

The epicentre of the quake was in the northern residential area of Remete, and the intensity in the epicentre was III-IV degrees on the EMS scale.

Residents in the city and its environs felt the tremor.

Sunday, 3 January 2021

Croatian Musicians Record Song of Support for Earthquake Victims

January 3, 2021 – Just two days after a devastating earthquake hit Croatia, five Croatian musicians showed their big hearts and released a song of support titled "Svi smo uz vas" (We are all with you), dedicated to all earthquake victims, to whom the copyright proceeds will be donated.

The quake that hit the Croatian towns of Petrinja, Sisak, Glina, and surrounding villages on Tuesday, encouraged many volunteers to help, but also some musicians. Desiring to give their contribution with a song, musicians Ivan Zak, Tiho Orlić, Mario Budiščak, Tomislav Priher, and Denis Ferjanić quickly gathered and recorded a song with the symbolic title Svi smo uz vas "(We are all with you).

"It is not enough to say that 2020 was challenging. We were alternately beaten by illness, earthquake, crisis, and this week's earthquakes in Petrinja, Sisak, Glina, and the surrounding area rounded off the unfortunate summary. They wrapped us in black, but also encouraged unity, kindness, and humanity," Ivan Zak told Večernji list.

However, in addition to their support being expressed through music, all copyright proceeds will go to earthquake victims.

"Along with material help, us musicians give our contribution to a song. I wrote this song to try to convey strength and optimism to people in such horrible moments of life. I sang it together with my colleagues Tiho Orlić, Mario Budiščak, Tomislav Priher, Denis Ferjanić," says Zak.

Domagoj Marijan signs the arrangement of the song, and Hit Records released it. Apart from Ivan Zak, other Croatian musicians have recently joined humanitarian and volunteer actions, helping in the field. Many others also appealed for help on their social networks. Singer Lana Jurčević even created a Facebook support group because, as she says, she received hundreds and hundreds of requests to publish information for help.

For more on the Petrinja earthquake and to see how you can donate money, food, humanitarian, sanitary, and material aid, follow TCN's dedicated section.

Saturday, 2 January 2021

Red Cross Gives Quake Victims 129 t of Food, 50,000 l of Water, 21,000 Hot Meals

ZAGREB, 2 January, 2021 - The Croatian Red Cross (HCK) said on Saturday that over the past three days they had distributed more than 129 tonnes of food in earthquake-hit areas as well as 50,000 litres of water and 21,000 hot meals.

They have also provided 172 heaters, 650 blankets, 39 generators, 700 packets of food and necessities for children as well as ensuring psychosocial support for 1,600 people.

The HCK has also opened two more locations in Petrinja for the accommodation of the people affected, including a service for tracing the missing and psychosocial support.

By 1 January, HRK 36.4 million was donated by physical and legal entities to help those affected by Tuesday's earthquake. Donations are still being collected. A donor line has received 69,169 calls bringing HRK 432,300.

(€1 = HRK 7.5)

Saturday, 2 January 2021

Petrinja Area Hit by 374 Tremors, Including 109 in Past Two Days

ZAGREB, 2 January, 2021 - The Petrinja area has been hit by 374 tremors since 28 December, including 109 over the past two days, the Zagreb Faculty of Science Department of Geophysics said on Saturday.

The first earthquake was registered at 6.28 a.m. on 28 December, measuring 5 on the Richter scale.

The strongest one struck Petrinja, Glina and Sisak at 12.19 p.m. on 29 December, measuring 6.2.

By 31 December, the area was hit by 265 tremors with magnitudes above 1 on the Richter scale.

Sixty-nine tremors were registered on 1 January and another 40 by 2 p.m. today.

Saturday, 2 January 2021

Health Minister for Reorganising, Adapting to New Circumstances After Quake

ZAGREB, 2 January, 2021 - Health Minister Vili Beros said on Saturday the ministry's task was to reorganise healthcare in the wider area hit by Tuesday's devastating earthquake, adding that it was necessary to adjust to the new circumstances and transfer patients to hospitals in Zagreb to "receive the adequate assistance."

Speaking to the press while visiting the Sisak General Hospital, which sustained extensive damage, Beros thanked its staff for receiving 32 patients and conducting over 90 checkups since the tremor.

Petrinja hospital temporarily unusable

The minister said "unfortunately... the building of the hospital in Petrinja is temporarily unusable and can't be made functional quickly in any way."

He said enough rapid antigen tests for coronavirus had arrived in the quake-struck area. "Over 1,500 vaccine doses have been ensured. Given that new doses are arriving on a weekly basis, it's certain that we will adapt to the new conditions and that as many doses as necessary will be reallocated for this county."

Beros said he did not expect everyone there to be vaccinated but that he would appeal that as many people as possible did to prevent the epidemic from spreading. He added that it took three to four weeks to acquire immunity, underlining the importance of vaccinating people as soon as possible.

Emergency medical aid containers set up

The minister said containers for emergency medical aid were set up in Petrinja because the local hospital was demolished.

"We are adapting to the circumstances. The ministry has instructed all health centres and family doctors to adapt to the new circumstances," he said, adding that medicines would be delivered to people with chronic diseases who lost their homes.

The director of the Petrinja hospital, Tomislav Dujmenovic, asked the contractors building a new hospital building to resume their work as soon as possible, saying the new building would solve all their problems.

Saturday, 2 January 2021

Mayor Says PM Reassured Him That More Money Would be Awarded to Petrinja

ZAGREB, 2 January, 2021 - The mayor of Petrinja, Darinko Dumbovic, said on Saturday that Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic had reassured him that there would be more money earmarked for this city which sustained extensive damage in the 29 December quake.

Dumbovic's latest statement ensued after he earlier said that he would not take the allocation for Petrinja in the amount of 30 million kuna, claiming that that relief was being distributed along party lines.

"We are human beings, we are not a stone. We must also react emotionally," Dumbovic, an official of the Reformists party, said adding that he had talked with Prime Minister Plenkovic in the meantime.

I have made it clear to the premier that we must have stronger communication, the mayor said.

Saturday, 2 January 2021

FM Thanks Int'l Community, Expats for Swift Quake Relief

ZAGREB, 2 January, 2021- Foreign Minister Gordan Grlic Radman on Saturday thanked the international community and Croatian emigrants for swiftly sending relief to those affected by a 6.2 earthquake in Sisak-Moslavina County, saying the government would not forget anyone affected.

Visiting the area struck on Tuesday, he told press in Lekenik the government was "pleasantly surprised" by the swift response of the international community and Croatian emigrants.

The government immediately requested the activation of the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, and more than half the member states responded in 24 hours, ready to help, said Grlic Radman.

Austria sent containers, Greece was the first to send a plane with 19 tonnes of relief, and Bulgaria and Poland have sent relief too, he said, adding that yesterday he spoke with colleagues from Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North America.

"They wanted to know what the situation was, if more assistance was necessary. They have shown great solidarity and empathy for our tragedy."

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen immediately called the prime minister and all Croatian ministers were in contact with their EU colleagues, Grlic Radman said.

He especially thanked Croatian emigrants from Australia, America and Germany for responding swiftly and starting to collect aid, saying that reminded him of how it was in the 1990s Homeland War.

Commenting on Petrinja Mayor Darinko Dumbovic's dissatisfaction with the allocation of state funds after the tremor, Grlic Radman said "one should not politicise with millions."

Dumbovic said he would return the government's HRK 30 million in aid because political affiliation was being considered, rather than people and the damage.

"The government set aside that money to show at the beginning the desire, the will for the first rehabilitation to be carried out," he said, adding that "naturally" the government would see "what else is necessary." 

Grlic Radman said the Interior Ministry had a well-established civil protection mechanism that was activated immediately. He pledged that all the relief necessary, from camp beds and lamps to containers and caravans, would continue to reach those affected by the tremor.

He underlined that the government would not leave anyone on their own, saying that all Croatian citizens must have a roof over their heads and heating.

"We are all here to help these people, to ease their pain. We can't bring back lives but we can help to reduce the pain, that people feel they are supported, that they are not alone, that they have not been abandoned, that they get a roof over their heads. In any case, we are there for them."

Saturday, 2 January 2021

Wreath Laid, Candles Lit for Seven Killed in Earthquake

ZAGREB, 2 January, 2021 - On Saturday, a national day of mourning for the seven killed in Tuesday's devastating earthquake, Petrinja Mayor Darinko Dumbovic and associates laid a wreath and lit candles where 13-year-old Laura Cvijic was killed.

Dumbovic recalled that dozens of people were injured in the 6.2 tremor.

The government on Thursday proclaimed January 2 a day of mourning. Besides the girl killed in the town of Petrinja, five people were killed in the village of Majske Poljane and an organist in a church in the village of Zazina.

According to current estimates, more than 2,000 buildings have been damaged. The centre of Petrinja sustained the biggest damage. Many people in Petrinja, Sisak, Glina and nearby villages have lost their homes. The earthquake has also caused damage in Zagreb and Krapina-Zagorje counties as well as in the City of Zagreb. A magnitude 5.0 foreshock with the epicentre near Petrinja on Monday has caused damage as well.

Relief convoys arriving from everywhere

Access to Petrinja today has almost been jammed due to relief convoys arriving from everywhere, including from abroad. Construction crews are still cleaning up the effects of the tremors, while dozens of construction engineers are inspecting buildings. Famous Croatian chefs are helping too by preparing thousands of meals a day.

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