After the floods in the Bad Neunar-Ahrweiler area in Rhineland-Palatinate, the fate of at least 1,300 people is unknown, 67 became victims of the unraveling elements.
Local authorities believe that “even more died,” without giving specific information. However, it is hoped that some of the missing are simply unable to reach someone due to the lack of mobile phone connectivity, says Malou Dreyer, Prime Minister of Rhineland-Palatinate Malou:
“We hope this will happen. There are people who are dead, people who are missing, people who are in danger. We have never seen such a disaster. It’s really scary. “
According to the Athens News Agency, the Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Armin Lasset, speaking yesterday live on the ZDF from Stolberg in Aachen, promised that the authorities will make every effort to promptly eliminate the consequences of flooding on roads, bridges and other objects.
Emergency services and the armed forces operating at the crash site are assisted by American volunteers from the nearby Spangdal airbase, distributing hundreds of sandbags to residents of the area.
The flooding has severely affected transport links in the region close to the borders with Belgium, Luxembourg, France and the Netherlands. There, too, the disaster struck a tangible blow – several people died in Belgium, a strong flood and in the Netherlands. Forecasters say more rain is expected in the coming days.
Heavy rains have been falling in western Germany since Monday. The rivers Ar, Moselle and several other small tributaries of the Rhine overflowed the banks. The main blow of the elements fell on the lands of North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate. Stefan Ramstorf, professor of ocean physics at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, says it is still unclear if rains in West Germany are related to global warming: “But we can say that such events are increasingly happening due to the greenhouse effect.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is on an official visit to the United States, addressed her compatriots at a joint press conference with Joe Biden at the White House:
“This is a day characterized by fear, despair and suffering, as small rivers turned into overflowing destructive streams. I express my sympathy and with all my heart I care for the people who have lost loved ones, including the people of Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. I am afraid that the scale of this tragedy will become evident only in the coming days. “
Joe Biden also expressed his condolences over the deadly flood: “We sincerely sympathize with the families who have lost loved ones.”