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Crimea: Almost half a million people left without power after Black Sea storm

One person has been killed and almost half a million people were left without power after a storm in the Black Sea area flooded roads, ripped up trees and took down power lines in Crimea.

The storm also hit southern Russia and sent waves flooding into the beach resort of Sochi blew the roof off a five-story building in Anapa and damaged homes and schools in Kuban

It was part of a weather front in Romania and Moldova on Sunday that left one person dead and hundreds of places without electricity amid heavy snowfall and strong blizzards

Several Crimean regions declared a state of emergency after it became the strongest recorded in the past 16 years with wind speeds reaching 144 kilometres per hour.

A rescuer carries a cat and helps a woman during an evacuation of residents of the flooded village of Pribrezhnoe in Crimea on November 27, 2023, following a storm.
A rescuer carries a cat and helps a woman during an evacuation of residents of the flooded village of Pribrezhnoe in Crimea on November 27, 2023, following a storm. - STRINGER/AFP

The government in Crimea, which Russia annexed illegally from Ukraine in 2014, told people to stay at home on Monday. Government offices, including schools and hospitals, were closed as strong winds continued throughout the day.

Natalia Pisareva, the head of one Crimean region, said everyone in the Chernomorske area of western Crimea had lost water supply and central heating because pumping stations had lost power. There were also reports of a problem with a gas pipeline in Saky, western Crimea.

A man walks in a flooded street during an evacuation of residents of the village of Pribrezhnoe in Crimea on November 27, 2023, following a storm.
A man walks in a flooded street during an evacuation of residents of the village of Pribrezhnoe in Crimea on November 27, 2023, following a storm. - STRINGER/AFP

In an aquarium in Sevastopol, around 800 exotic fish and animals died after the room they were in was flooded.

In Russia, the Caspian Pipeline Consortium stopped crude oil loading at the Novorossiysk port on Monday due to the "extremely unfavourable weather conditions," including winds of up to about 86 kilometres per hour and waves of up to 8 metres in height.