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Water boards on high alert as heavy rain fills Dutch rivers

Monday 24 December 2012

The Woudagemaal pumping station is switched on

Days of heavy rain in Europe have led to high water levels in the Netherlands' rivers, putting water boards in the north and south on alert.

In Friesland, water levels are so high that the Woudagemaal pumping station has been switched on to move surplus water into the Ijsselmeer lake, the NRC said. The Woudagemaal, which dates from 1920, is a Unesco world heritage site.

The situation in Friesland has been compounded by high sea levels in the Wadden Sea, making the use of the extra pump capacity essential, RTL news reported.

Sea level

The water in the Rhine at Lobith, where the river crosses into the Netherlands, is now 13 metres above NAP - the base used to measure how high or low water levels are. This is considered high but not worrying, RTL said.

If the level rises to 14 metres above NAP as expected, the environment ministry will take action to ensure excess water is pumped into the IJsselmeer.

The banks of the IJssel river in Rhenen have also been closed to traffic and walkers, the Gelderlander newspaper said.


The Maas river has burst its banks in several places and some cellars have been flooded. The Maas is now 42.22 metres above NAP in Borgharen, where the criticial level is 45 metres. Borgharen, in Limburg, is prone to flooding.

Water boards in Limburg are also taking precautions after days of heavy rain led to high river levels between the German border and Roermond. The Peel en Maasvallei water board in the north of the province has put temporary dyke supports and pumps at the ready.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

It was all predicted by the Mayans: they predicted heavy rain would be the cause their famous apocalypse, after all (it was in one of their codexes).

Well, the Mayan-believers might be afraid now, but no need: while I didn't tell a lie, I did tell a joke.

By Someone | 24 December 2012 8:13 PM

so the guy who build the wooden Ark near schagen is like saying "ha you made fun of me before.. who's laughing now.. hate to say i told you so"

By Martin Treadgold | 24 December 2012 11:48 PM

@Someone: the cloud seeding to make rain that started in the 60's hasn't helped matters either, I guess we will never know the whole truth & just keep guessing.

By The visitor | 25 December 2012 2:21 PM

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