Cars get stuck on flooded freeway in Ruhr area

style="float: right; margin-bottom: 10px; font-weight: 600;"Sat 10th Jul, 2021

Thunderstorms flooded basements and streets in several regions of Germany on Thursday. Parts of North Rhine-Westphalia, Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg were particularly affected. In the evening, severe weather warnings of the German Weather Service (DWD) were still in effect for heavy thunderstorms with heavy rain and hail in parts of Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg. In addition to the flooding of basements and roads, damage from hail and locally also lightning damage is to be expected, the DWD announced in Offenbach.

In the Ruhr region, highway 42 near Herne was flooded. Between the Herne interchange and the Gelsenkirchen-Bismarck exit, numerous cars were stuck in the water, it was said on Thursday evening from the control center of the highway police. The section of road had been closed. Police and firefighters were deployed with pumps, among other things, to monitor the situation and, if necessary, take care of those stuck.

The fire department control center in Herne spoke in the evening of more than 50 operations. One is with 130 forces in use. According to the information, numerous cellars were flooded and several large exit roads were flooded.

In the neighboring city of Bochum, the fire department also had to respond to storm-related incidents. Twice, lightning had struck trees there that were threatening to topple. In the town of Fröndenberg an der Ruhr, which had already been hit hard by flooding a few days ago, several cellars were again flooded.

During storms, several cellars in eastern Bavaria were also flooded and trees fell onto roads on Thursday. According to the Passau integrated control center, the emergency services in the surrounding counties were called out 122 times by early evening. The most frequent emergency calls came from the district of Rottal-Inn (66). These were mainly water damage, said a spokesman.

In Baden-Württemberg, heavy rain also led to chaos and traffic obstructions. In Kraichtal in the district of Karlsruhe, many cellars were full, several streets were flooded and partly covered with mud, according to a city spokeswoman. Within a few minutes, it had rained so heavily that the water could no longer drain away.

In the Czech Republic, two people died in a storm when a tree fell on their car. The driver had no chance to react in time, police said Thursday evening. Two children sitting in the back seat were injured and taken to hospital. The accident occurred near the southern Bohemian town of Pisek, nearly 90 kilometers south of Prague. According to police, the dead were strangers who had offered to drive the children home in the storm. The parents, who continued on foot, were unharmed.

Fire departments in the southwestern Czech Republic went out on dozens of calls in the evening to clear fallen trees from roads and pump out cellars full of rainwater. Service had to be interrupted on several rail lines. Just two weeks ago, a tornado in the southeast of the Czech Republic killed six people, injured hundreds and damaged around 1,200 houses.

Image by Chris


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