Eastern France prepares to torrential rains, storms and winds after the climatic phenomenon that affects Germany, Luxembourg and Belgium, with more than 126 dead and 1,300 missing in rising waters.
The French Meteo Chain arranged “orange alert” in 17 departments “at significant risk of floods and rainfall and strong winds” on Friday morning, especially near the Mediterranean and in the Rhone Valley.
Among the departments affected by the alert are Moselle, Meurthe and Mosselle, on the border with Germany, Ain, Ardennes, Cote d’Or, Jura, Vosges, Savoie, Bas Rhin and the territory of Belfort. Major floods are expected in the Vosges and Jura, with the risk of ground slides.
Aerial photograph, taken with a drone, showing the destroyed village of Schuld in Germany. Photo: EFE
Authorities fear the phenomenon that is now shaking western Germany, Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg. Violent storms, floods and landslides have caused more than 120 deaths in Europe, of which there are at least 110 in Germany and 12 in Belgium.
Helicopters search for survivors
In Germany 1,300 people are considered missing. The same amount of water fell in 48 hours as in two months of precipitation.
Helicopters have been deployed to search for survivors in Germany and Belgium.
Chancellor Angela Merkel is considering returning from Washington early when she is on her farewell tour.
“I am deeply moved by the suffering of these affected people, fearful that the true breadth of the catastrophe will be known in the next days ”said the chancellor.
Climate change as a cause
Climate change will mark the campaign of his replacement and the French presidential one next year.
Flooded villages in Belgium. Photo: EFE
The images in Germany are desolate. Cars and houses dragged by the currents, semi-sunken caravans in the middle of terrifyingly swollen rivers and with the powerful force of water.
Cars float down the street Main Bayenberg in Germany, where the water reached the first floor of the buildings. In Bad Münstereifel, cars have been trapped between cinder blocks. The asphalt has disappeared in Hagen.
The image of destruction
West Germany is the picture of destruction, in a catastrophe that stretches from Rhineland Palatinat to North Rhine Westphalia. A scene never seen in the most developed country in Europe.
Cars have been trapped between cinder blocks. Photo: EFE
Is feared the breaking of the dam Rurtalsperre, which is close to the Belgian border, and Steinbachtalsperre near Bonn.
The provisional list of dead may increase. The bodies of nine people who lived in a center for the disabled washed away by the force of the waters were found on Thursday night in Germany. They were surprised by the rise of the water.
The Ahrweiler district, near Bonn, the former capital, is so far the most affected in Germany, with 20 temporary deaths.
Cars at the cemetery in Bad Neuenahr-ahrweiler, Germany. Photo: EFE
Everyone was surprised by how quickly the waters rose. No one had time to protect themselves no problem. They did not expect it.
The German army is on the ground and the firefighters lost two of their men in rescue efforts. At least 15,000 military and firefighters are displaced in the affected areas.
The most dramatic situation is in Bad Neuenahar Ahweiler, a canton in ruins. Authorities confirmed late Thursday that there are 1,300 people of whom no news. They believe it is due to the difficulties over the telephone lines.
The most dramatic situation is in Bad Neuenahar ahweiler, a canton in ruins. Photo: EFE
“At least there are 60 people who they do not give the slightest sign of life. So we can think the worst, ”Interior Minister Roger Lewentz told SWR television. “Consequently, the risk of more victims may increase in the coming days,” he warned.
In the commune of Sculd, south of Bonn, six houses fell in front of the river. The police believe that there are between 50 to 60 disappeared there. The inhabitants were invited by the police to send photos and videos, which would give some indication of their missing relatives and neighbors.
In Erftstadt, in Germany, a hospital and a nursing home were evacuated with the help of an excavator shovel.
The deluge rains continue to hit the west of the country and the rescues are complicated by the fallen trees, roads flooded and houses destroyed. Many of the people to be rescued took refuge on the roof of their houses before the force of the waters. The authorities ask the population to stay in their homes and on the upper floors if possible.
For Germany they are climatic catastrophes that are repeated. In 1920 the city of Dresden was flooded. But this time, the floods and overflows were the oldest in 20 years. At least 135,000 people are without electricity and the 500 patients at the Leverkusen clinic were dramatically evacuated.
Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg
But the phenomenon spread to Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, its neighbors. In Liëge, Belgium, the inhabitants who live in front of the Meuse river, they had to jump out of bed in the middle of the night, before the sudden rise of the waters.
The president of the region, Elio di Rupo warned that the flood was going to take “a very dangerous character in the city itself.” Verviers in Belgium was hit hard by the flood.
Liege, in Belgium, under the waters. Photo: AP
In the south of Holland they asked to evacuate the houses. The River Meuse should reach its historic level this Friday. In Maastricht, authorities expect it to overflow between 2 and 3 in the morning and will reach its highest level in two centuries.
Environmentalists are using this natural catastrophe, two months before the legislative elections. They have been accused by the German press of exploit the country’s tragedy. The vice president of the Greens in the Bundestag, Konstantin Von Notz, had to publicly apologize, after having published a tweet against climate change, reproaching the alleged inaction of his competitors.
But all politicians have agreed that “rapid and far-reaching protection” should be called for against climate change. Many German politicians they interrupted their vacations to get to the flooded area.
Rhineland-Palatinate, under the waters. Photo: dpa
Are even expected strong storms this Friday in western Germany ..
The president of the European Commission and former German defense minister, Ursula Van der Leyen He said that “the facts are a clear indication of climate change. This shows the urgency to act. “
The emergency too now extends to Switzerland, where heavy rains are expected and rivers and lakes overflow. “Precaution against landslides is requested because the land is very saturated.”
At least 80 millimeters are forecast with winds and a storm. The risk is that Lake Biel, Yhun and Lucerna overflow, which is in danger 5, according to the authorities.