Published on July 19th, 2021 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Cars Totalled As Floods Ravage Germany And Belgium
Worst floods ever for the region sees hundreds of cars underwater and scrapped.
At least 158 people or more are now known to have died in the floods in Germany, including four firefighters. Flooded cars are being searched for bodies as flood waters begin to recede in the hard hit areas.
European weather experts said the rain and flooding were rare and the week’s devastation could amount to the region’s worst natural disaster in more than 50 years.
The World Meteorological Organization said devastated areas received up to two months of rain-fall in just two days. Western Germany has suffered the most brutal impact of the raging waters that also hit neighbors Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands very hard.
Germany’s worst-hit states are the North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) and Rhineland-Palatinate and most roads in the submerged Ahr Valley are out of service.
Floodwaters were also reported in the regions around Berchtesgaden and Salzburg, with flash foods in the Austrian town of Hallein. Mayor Alexander Stangassinger said the local river swelled up with no warning, sending floodwater racing through town, filling cellar and flipping over cars.
The German military used armored vehicles to clear away cars and trucks overwhelmed by the floodwaters on a nearby road, some of which remained at least partly submerged. Officials feared that some people didn’t manage to escape in Erftstadt.
Reuters has just reported news on the devastating floods that have hot parts of Germany and also Belgium.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel described the flooding that has devastated parts of Europe as “terrifying” on Sunday after the death toll across the region rose to 188 and a district of Bavaria was battered by the extreme weather.
Merkel promised swift financial aid after visiting one of the areas worst affected by the record rainfall and floods that have killed at least 157 in Germany alone in recent days, in the country’s worst natural disaster in almost six decades.
She also said governments would have to get better and faster in their efforts to tackle the impact of climate change only days after Europe outlined a package of steps towards “net zero” emissions by the middle of the century.
“It is terrifying,” she told residents of the small town of Adenau in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate. “The German language can barely describe the devastation that’s taken place.”
As efforts continued to track down missing people, the devastation continued on Sunday when a district of Bavaria, southern Germany, was hit by flash floods that killed at least one person.
Roads were turned into rivers, some vehicles were swept away and swathes of land buried under thick mud in Berchtesgadener Land. Hundreds of rescue workers were searching for survivors in the district, which borders Austria.
“We were not prepared for this,” said Berchtesgadener Land district administrator Bernhard Kern, adding that the situation had deteriorated “drastically” late on Saturday, leaving little time for emergency services to act.