Wednesday 28 July 2021

Heavy rain brings flash flooding to Limburg, more rain is on the way

Checking out the water damage in Heerlen. Photo: Marcel van Hoorn ANP

The KNMI weather bureau has withdrawn its code red weather warning for parts of Limburg because of exceptionally heavy downpours but warns that more rain is on the way.

A stretch of the A2 motorway was closed in both directions on Thursday morning because of the flood risk.

The rain has brought widespread flooding to parts of Limburg, Germany and Belgium and at least four people are now known to have died after six homes collapsed in the German town of Schuld (Rijnland-Palts). Dozens more are missing.

In Valkenburg, near Maastricht, 433 homes are without electricity because of the floods and the occupants of a hospice and a nursing home had to be evacuated overnight because of the flood risk.

Holidaymakers staying on a nearby campsite were also taken to safety as were guests from a town centre hotel.

The army was drafted in to help with the rescue and flood prevention efforts after more than 10 centimetres of rain fell in a short space of time.

People are also being urged to stay in their homes until the water has gone down because of the currents. ‘You can be dragged away,’ Maarten de Kever from the local safety board told NPO news.

In Maastricht itself the water level in the Maas river is high but has not given rise to any problems. The government’s roads department expect it to reach a peak on Thursday evening, setting a new record.

A code yellow weather warning for more heavy rain is now in place for all of the country apart from the three western provinces.

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