A tourist from Moldiva has described the horrible scenes when gale force winds, heavy rain and hailstorms lashed Halkidiki late on Wednesday which has now left seven people dead.
“Everything happened suddenly. At some point everyone started running. At first some people thought it was a joke,” the tourist told ANA.
“When we reached our room, everything was dark, there was no power. We went to the balcony and saw all the trees had fallen,” she added.
When the rain had stopped, she remembers hearing somebody shouting that there were people trapped under the trees.
“We looked for about two hours and the man who found them started shouting, ‘they are here!’” referring to the Russian man and toddler who were killed in the powerful storm.
Greek Citizen Protection Minister, Michalis Chrysochoidis has sent his condolences to the affected families, saying crews are working around the clock to restore damages and electricity in the affected areas, which is expected to return in most areas by Thursday night.
“We will do all we can as a country to stand in solidarity with those people who lost family members,” he said after an emergency meeting was held early Thursday morning in Halkidiki. He also hailed the “tireless” crews working to restore electricity and remove fallen trees and objects form the road network.
Defense Minister Nikos Panagiotopoulos has also stated that the army will assist local authorities and are “ready to transfer machinery to repair damages. We will offer generators until power is restored in the first peninsula.”