Local officials warned on Sunday night the worst has yet to come

Severe winds and storm tides battered the Crimean Peninsula on Saturday, knocking down trees, ripping off roofs, and leaving nearly half a million residents without power. Water supply interruptions have also been reported in multiple settlements.

The calamity caused flooding in several communities along the southwestern shore of the peninsula, including the Black Sea resort city of Yevpatoria, where rescuers helped some 142 people relocate to temporary facilities. Many roads were flooded, including the highway between the towns of Saki and Yevpatoria.

Three people were hospitalized with various injuries as of Sunday night. The storm caused damage to at least 23 houses and 17 vehicles, while dozens of trees and several billboards were knocked down.

According to weather forecasts, the peak of the storm is still ahead, the governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev, said following an emergency meeting early Monday morning.

“Overnight temperatures may be sub-zero, so we are starting to pave the roads in the most difficult places,” he said on his Telegram, adding that rescue services will continue to work throughout the night.

Russia’s Emergencies Ministry (EMERCOM) first announced a storm warning in Crimea due to the Mediterranean cyclone on Thursday. Local authorities in Crimea declared a day off on Monday, urging residents to stay home and let the emergency services deal with the aftermath of the crisis.

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