Floods in Germany and Belgium: “Many houses do not exist” – Families whose lives have been destroyed by the floods

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Floods in Germany and Belgium: “Many houses do not exist” – Families whose lives have been destroyed by the floods


Families mourn their loved ones after devastating floodwaters hit parts of Germany and Belgium, sweeping homes and leaving many others in danger of collapsing.

Sky Europe correspondent Michelle Clifford visited the village of Schuld in western Germany and Ensival in eastern Belgium to speak to families whose neighborhoods have been turned into scenes of devastation generalized.

When we visit the German village of Schuld, many of its inhabitants are walking through the streets looking simply dumbfounded.

They can’t take into account the magnitude of what the flooding has delivered here. House after house, property after property simply broken by water.

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What is behind the flash floods in Europe?

And some of the inhabitants of this place where people know each other have lost their lives.

We talk to an elderly woman who says she has been a victim of flooding in the past, but nothing like it in her life.

The sheer force of the water has left much of the village in ruins, some houses completely destroyed, cars overturned, huge trees torn from their roots.

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“We were told our house could collapse”

Many find it difficult to hold back tears as they show what happened to their properties.

Margaret Radermacher takes us to the house she has lived in for sixteen years.

The floors are smeared with mud, the furniture soggy, everything in his sewing workshop will have to be replaced.

“It’s an absolute disaster,” she told me.

“There are a lot of people who have been affected. Many houses do not exist, the extent is not yet known. “

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Schuld’s families face scenes of widespread devastation

Schuld was one of the areas in western Germany hardest hit by flooding after almost unprecedented rainfall.

Electricity, electricity and telephone connection are cut off.

This meant that many worried relatives spent hours trying to find out if their loved ones were safe.

Flood damage in debt
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Up to 70 people are missing in the German village of Schuld

A car is submerged between two boats in the Meuse during flooding in Liège, Belgium.  Photo: AP
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A car is submerged between two boats in the Meuse during flooding in Liège, Belgium. Photo: AP

We meet Andreas Mueller outside his mother and stepfather’s house.

He spent the last night waiting hours to find out if they were safe.

“At night they were upstairs and it was dark because there was no electricity,” he said.

“There was also no phone connection, we tried to reach them all night and it was very difficult to get them. “

Her in-laws are now safe, but the house they have lived in for most of their lives is uninhabitable. They spent the night sheltering upstairs.

Firefighters and rescuers are doing what they can to secure the village and its surroundings.

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Rooftop rescue for flood victims in Germany
Laetita Colin uses her hand to show how high the water was rising in her house
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Laetita Colin uses her hand to show how high the water was rising in her house

Some houses have already collapsed and others are standing precariously.

We entered the village on a road and when we passed a few hours later it had collapsed. The police guided people on alternative routes.

And the fear here is that more rain will come and with it more misery for West Germany.

The ground is already soggy, properties already damaged and so many people have already seen their homes and businesses destroyed.

Rain and flooding have had an impact far beyond this corner of Germany.

Houses in eastern Belgium are also underwater after record levels of rain. Some properties are now too dangerous to stay there.

Flood damage in debt
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Properties were destroyed by flood waters in Schuld
The floods were dangerously high in Belgium
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The floods were dangerously high in Belgium

Laetita Colin and her family were forced to leave their home in Ensival commune.

“Around 4 am, the water started to rise from there, I told my partner and I was able to move the car and quickly move some objects upstairs,” she said. declared.

“Then we had to go because the waters rose so quickly inside the house. “

Of the more than 57 deaths caused by flooding in Europe, 49 of the deaths occurred in Germany, with Chancellor Angela Merkel calling the situation a disaster “.

In Belgium, among the victims were two men who died due to torrential rains. A 15-year-old girl is missing after being washed away by a swollen river.

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