The reconstruction of the severely flooded regions in western Germany will cost billions of euros. Interior Minister Horst Seehofer calls this an exceptional situation that can only be remedied with a great concerted effort.
Government sources have told DPA news agency that the damage to the roads and train network is already at least 2 billion euros. According to the regional newspaper Rheinische Post, only 43 percent of the affected homes in North Rhine-Westphalia are insured against this type of damage. A bank in the region has calculated that insurers will have to pay out at least 2.5 billion euros due to the flooding. On top of that, there is the damage to uninsured homes.
The government says it is in the process of establishing a fund for affected people. The details on that will be discussed once all damage is included.
Still months to go
It could take months to repair the damage. Everything has to be cleaned up first and then rebuilt. Transport Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Hendrik Wüst tells Rheinische Post that all this must be done quickly and without bureaucracy.
The death toll in Germany currently stands at 164. 117 people died in Rhineland-Palatinate and 47 in North Rhine-Westphalia. People are still missing in Germany. At least 30,000 people are still without electricity.
A lot of criticism
The alarm system was widely criticized in Germany. Although there were warnings of extreme weather, the government intervened too late, many residents of affected regions believe. The government has already committed to evaluating the system. According to Seehofer, this does not mean that everything will now be centrally arranged. “It doesn’t necessarily get any better than that.”
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