Water levels of most rivers not further rising, except for lower Sava near Croatia

Ljubljana, 5 August - Water levels for most rivers in Slovenia are stabilising, as the intensity of rainfall is slowly easing. However, the lower Sava near Croatia in the south-east continues to rise, with most problems expected at the confluence of the Sava and the Krka, south of the town of Brežice, meteorologists told the press in Ljubljana on Saturday.

The swollen Sava river in the north-west of the country.
Photo: Alenka Vesenjak/STA

The river Sava in the Medvode area north of Ljubljana.
Photo: Ksenija Brišar/STA

Water levels in central, western and northern Slovenia did rise, but the situation is not deteriorating as drastically as before, and water levels will start receding, hydrologist Janez Polajnar from the Environment Agency (ARSO) told the press on Saturday.

However, the situation is deteriorating on the lower Sava in the south-east where water volumes have reached 1,600 cubic meters per second.

This is to further increase during the day, as more water flows into the Sava from its tributary Krka.

The biggest problems are expected where the Krka joins the Sava, particularly around the town of Krška Vas, south of Brežice. The situation is to remain serious until Sunday afternoon, said Polajnar.

Meteorologist Brane Gregorčič said that less rain has been recorded in recent hours and raining will not intensify during the day.

"While yesterday we measured between 30 and 90 litres of rain per square metre in 12 hours during the day, last night we measured only 20 to 50 litres in 12 hours. Today we expect somewhere between 15 and 30 litres during the day, and next night, especially in the east, between five and 15 litres per square metre," he said.

ARSO thus downgraded the weather alert to yellow, the lowest before green, while most of the country was orange yesterday.

However, a cold front will reach the country on Sunday afternoon bringing storms, including hail, yet no major quantities of rain. Primorska, the western region that has been partly spared over the past 24-plus hours, is expected to be hit the most.

The weather will then stabilise in the night to Monday for a week of sunny weather, Gregorčič said.

The Savinja is meanwhile still flooding but no longer swelling after it wrecked havoc in the Savinja Valley fully flooding the towns of Mozirje and Nazarje.

Water Agency director Neža Kodre said the situation is still critical in terms of water levels in the entire Savinja Valley.

The Drava, in the north-east, is also flooding but its levels are stable, said Polajnar.

"The Mura's water volumes are at 1,300 cubic meters per second, which means at the brink of the anti-flood embankment but it is not flooding," he said.

Kodre said that to prevent the Mura from flooding dry floodproofing would be installed today.

Most of the rivers will continue to recede on Sunday, with the exception of lower parts of the major rivers such as the Sava, Drava and Mura, said Polajnar.

© STA, 2023