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Russian Flood Death Toll Hits 150; Putin Orders Investigation

Local residents stand in a flooded courtyard of a house in the town of Krymsk, which has been seriously damaged by floods, in the Krasnodar region, southern Russia, July 8, 2012.

Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded answers Sunday after severe flooding in southern Russia killed more than 150 people.

"I have asked the head of Russia's Investigative Committee to come here, the Investigative Committee will check the actions of all the officials, how the notification [of people] went, when the news came in, when it could and should have happened and who acted in which way," Putin said.

State television showed Mr. Putin speaking with emergency ministry officials, who assured him the flood was not caused by problems at a nearby dam, as alleged by locals.

Residents in the hard-hit town of Krymsk were not warned before a flash flood hit in the middle of the night Saturday, flooding houses, flipping cars and tearing up pavement. Many residents drowned. Much of the city remains without power and drinking water.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.