Heavy rain hits Kakheti region of Georgia

The hailstorm ruined about 80 percent of crops in several villages in Dusheti and Gori municipalities. Photo by RFE/RL
Agenda.ge, 10 Jun 2017 - 19:08, Tbilisi,Georgia

Heavy rain and hail has damaged vineyards and other agricultural lands in Georgia’s main wine-making region of Kakheti.

The village of Giorgitsminda in Sagarejo region and its surrounding areas suffered most from today’s sudden storm that lasted no more than 20 minutes.

The special hail protection facilities have saved the population from even greater damage.

Governor of Kakheti Irakli Kadagishvili said the country’s Military Scientific-Technical Centre DELTA launched 30 anti-hail rockets into clouds to resist the hail.

DELTA designed the revolutionary anti-hail system in 2015. Photo by the PM's press office

The anti-hail system installed on Chorota Mountain in Kakheti worked by launching an unguided 60mm rocket into the air, which would disperse a reagent into the air to reduce hail from forming in the clouds. 

When the rocket reached the appropriate height, the silver iodine reagent will be dispersed at an altitude of 2.5-4.5 km above ground for 30-35 seconds.

Governor Kadagishvili said the anti-hail system is currently working in the municipalities of Akhmeta, Gurjaani and Telavi where the hail has been forecast. He said "almost every third day we have to deal with the hail”.

The total amount of damage is not yet clear as the monitoring groups of the local municipality are still counting the damage.

Heavy rain also reached some districts of the Georgian capital of Tbilisi.

Georgian emergency service 112 said the rain entered the ground floors of the residential buildings in the districts of Gldani and Tsereteli. However, the sky has cleared now and the roads are being cleaned for traffic.