BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) — Record flooding in the Balkans has left at least 20 people dead in Serbia and Bosnia and is forcing tens of thousands to flee their homes, authorities said Saturday.

Two men wade through the flood water, in the Bosnian town of Maglaj, 150 kms north of Sarajevo, Friday May 16, 2014. Two people drowned in Serbia and the country declared a national emergency Thursday as rain-swollen rivers across the Balkans flooded roads and bridges, shut down schools and cut off power. Hundreds of people had to be evacuated. In Serbia and neighboring Bosnia, meteorologists said the rainfall was the most since measuring started 120 years ago. Belgrade authorities say the average rainfall of a two-month period hit the city in just 40 hours. (AP Photo/Amel Emric)

Two men wade through the flood water, in the Bosnian town of Maglaj, 150 kms north of Sarajevo, Friday May 16, 2014. Two people drowned in Serbia and the country declared a national emergency Thursday as rain-swollen rivers across the Balkans flooded roads and bridges, shut down schools and cut off power. (AP Photo/Amel Emric)

Meteorologists say the flooding is the worst since records began 120 years ago and is due to a three-month amount of rain that fell on the region in just three days. Goran Mihajlovic from Serbia’s Weather Center told The Associated Press that such rainfall happens once in 100 years.

In the eastern Bosnian town of Bijeljina, some 10,000 people were being evacuated Saturday after the rain-swollen Sava River surged through flood defenses.

Officials in Bosnia say 12 people died and more bodies could emerge as the water recedes from dozens of cities flooded in the past three days. In some places, the water had reached the second floor of people’s homes and they had to be rescued by helicopter from their roofs.

A member of the Bosnian army carries a boy rescued from his home, during floods, in the Bosnian town of Maglaj, 150 kms north of Sarajevo, Friday May 16, 2014. Two people drowned in Serbia and the country declared a national emergency Thursday as rain-swollen rivers across the Balkans flooded roads and bridges, shut down schools and cut off power. Hundreds of people had to be evacuated. In Serbia and neighboring Bosnia, meteorologists said the rainfall was the most since measuring started 120 years ago. Belgrade authorities say the average rainfall of a two-month period hit the city in just 40 hours. (AP Photo/Amel Emric)

A member of the Bosnian army carries a boy rescued from his home in the Bosnian town of Maglaj, 150 kms north of Sarajevo, Friday May 16, 2014. Two people drowned in Serbia and the country declared a national emergency Thursday as rain-swollen rivers across the Balkans flooded roads and bridges, shut down schools and cut off power. (AP Photo/Amel Emric)

In Serbia, which saw eight deaths, emergency crews and soldiers were using boats and helicopters to rescue thousands trapped in the town of Obrenovac, near Belgrade. The overflowing waters there are now threatening Serbia’s biggest power plant.

Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic told a press conference that a new flood wave on the Sava River will hit Sunday evening.

Thousands of volunteers have responded to government’s appeal to help build up flood defenses around the towns along the Sava.

A woman is assisted by volunteers, during floods, in the Bosnian town of Maglaj, 150 kms north of Sarajevo, Friday May 16, 2014. Two people drowned in Serbia and the country declared a national emergency Thursday as rain-swollen rivers across the Balkans flooded roads and bridges, shut down schools and cut off power. Hundreds of people had to be evacuated. In Serbia and neighboring Bosnia, meteorologists said the rainfall was the most since measuring started 120 years ago. Belgrade authorities say the average rainfall of a two-month period hit the city in just 40 hours. (AP Photo/Amel Emric)

A woman is assisted by volunteers, during floods, in the Bosnian town of Maglaj, 150 kms north of Sarajevo, Friday May 16, 2014. In Serbia and neighboring Bosnia, meteorologists said the rainfall was the most since measuring started 120 years ago. Belgrade authorities say the average rainfall of a two-month period hit the city in just 40 hours. (AP Photo/Amel Emric)

Other Must-Read Stories