A single information system for co-ordination and actions to assist in emergency situations on the Danube River will be set up by Bulgaria and Romania. It will be connected to the emergency number ...

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A single information system for co-ordination and actions to assist in emergency situations on the Danube River will be set up by Bulgaria and Romania. It will be connected to the emergency number 112 and to operations centres of the Border Police and firefighting service. The partners in the project are the maritime administrations of Bulgaria and Romania.

The aim is to improve transport safety on the river. The system will be built using EU financing to the amount of six million euro.

There had been about 50 emergency situations on the Danube in the past year. Nearly 60% of the cases involved vessel jams and water pollution.

Petar Kirov, chief secretary of Bulgaria’s Maritime Administration: We have had cases where we have received reports of distressed sailors, we have called for assistance to the Border Police, thanks to their forces and resources, we were able to respond on time. The system we are talking about will support the coordination of all participants in the emergency and rescue operations, including the General Directorate of Fire Safety and the 55th Engineer Regiment in the town of Belene.

Emergency rescue centres are planned to be established in Rousse and Lom on the Bulgarian side and in Turnu Măgurele on the Romanian side.

Laurenzio Zanfir, Romania project manager said that the two countries would develop a common action plan with the ultimate goal of immediate action by the teams of the two countries.

The teams will be ready to rescue cruise ships as needed. Therefore two non-self-propelled barges with equipment for reaction to fires, floods and spills on the river will be purchased at the end of next year.