Tons of rocks flooded the village Assos in the west coast of Kefalonia, trapped people in their homes, buried vehicles, destroyed houses and businesses. The picturesque harbor of the village is practically non-existent. The torrential rainfalls of medicane Ianos brought rocks, mud and other debris from the mountain.
There is no electricity and water for the third consecutive day. Nobody can leave the village as the 25 cars at their disposal are buried under the stones.
No municipality or state teams have arrived in Assos, no heavy machinery has started to remove the hundreds of tone or rocks.
“We are waiting for them to come and dig us out,” a woman told media.
“No one has stepped foot in our village,” a young shopkeeper said. “Shops, cars, houses have been lost. They have become one with its mud and stones” she added.
“We cannot leave the village, our cars are buried” an middle-aged couple told Skai TV said on Sunday morning.
The disaster started with a heavy rainfall in the early hours of Friday. It started to rain around 2 o’ clock in the morning and stopped at 7 in the afternoon the next day.
“We could hear the roar from the rocks that ran through the village, it was shocking… ”
Many locals said that the water passed through their homes, literally entering from one door and coming out from the other.
“We have clean bed sheets and are waiting for help” a middle-aged woman said with the shock still in her eyes.
The river of rocks reached down to the beach and the harbor that has been destroyed.
Deputy Minister for Crisis Management and head of Civil Protection Nikos Hardalias arrived on the island on Saturday afternoon and inspected from a helicopter the damaged Medicane Ianos left behind.
“It is time for very hard work and few words, we dealt with details on issues related to the immediate restoration of the damages and return to normalcy for the island of Kefalonia and Ithaca,” Hardalias said after a meeting with local authorities and service bodies.
The issues that topped the meeting agenda were the restoration of electricity, water supply and road networks.
In the neighboring island of Ithaca, power supply is still cut on Sunday morning and when electricity comes for short time, locals recharge with mobile phones in order to keep up their connection with the outside world.
Already on Friday, the Civil Protection declared “state of emergency” for the islands of Kefalonia, Ithaca and Zakynthos, yet state aid is still away on Sunday.
Access to Assos village is difficult due to landslides and destruction.
Volunteers in Action
However, some brave volunteers from other areas got together and brought aid to the people of Assos, long before the state mechanism could wake up and move in the right direction.
Local businesses, supermarkets and taverns donated food and water and provided the vehicle sof rthe transport and the aid group arrived in Assos late on Saturday.
“People there live among ruins, mud and rocks in complete darkness. We have met their needs for food and water until tomorrow, but they will definitely need more, and in addition some light sources such as floodlights and batteries. The good (and bad) thing is that we were the first aid and the people who got there after the hurricane,” member of Kostas Vitorakis from Kefalonia Wild Nature wrote on social media.
sources: kefalonitianea, libre, and others
Never saw anything like this! Should be shown to all those idiotic climate change deniers. These towns need a wall or dam to prevent this happening in the future. More weather like this is guaranteed in the future.
Surreal but very real for people on the ground. The terrible might of Nature. Amazing what torrential rains can do. Good to see that Greek people are helping each other.
I feel heartbroken for the people of Assos- it was the most beautiful place I had ever been. My thoughts are with you and my hope that you can restore your beautiful village
I was moved to tears seeing the devastation of Assos, such a special quiet friendly village where Ken and I spent many happy holidays. I know the local families will pull together and get the funds to restore the village. Good luck Christo, Panno and all my other friends my thoughts are with you.
We were on holiday outside of fiskardo when this storm hit . Its rained for 26hrs non stop. High winds flattened trees and huge amoumts of mud and water came flooding down the hill. We had no electricity till wednesday after .Then water later. It was pitch black. We had one candle. Water poured tjrough the ceiling onto ours beds. The sea sunk boats and shops were filled with mud and rocks. Poor Asos and her people , such a unique and beautiful place. Wishing all affected a happy recovery .