Germany Belgium floods live: Latest death toll as houses swept away

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Aerials of flooded village in western Germany

More than 40 people have died and dozens more are missing after heavy flooding in Germany and Belgium, officials have confirmed.

Record rainfall meant rivers and streams burst their banks, causing buildings to collapse and cars to be swept away.

Most of the fatalities occurred in Germany, with the worst-affected states being North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate.

Officials confirmed that 18 people had died in the German county of Ahrweiler, while 70 people are still missing after houses collapsed in the village of Schuld, south-west of Cologne.

Flood warnings were issued overnight and hundreds of people were evacuated. One 63-year-old local man, who fled Ahrweiler, said: “I’ve never experienced a catastrophe where the river burst its banks in such a short space of time.”

Malu Dreyer, the leader of the state of Rhineland-Palatinate, described the flooding in similar terms. “It’s a catastrophe. There are dead, missing and many people still in danger. All of our emergency services are in action round the clock and risking their own lives,” she said.

There have also been devastating floods in Belgiu,m, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

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Good morning, and welcome to The Independent’s live coverage of the flooding in Europe.

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 11:15

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At least 19 dead in Germany flooding, reports suggest

At least 19 people are thought to have died because of heavy flooding in western Germany, with two firefighters among the dead.

Six houses collapsed in the country’s western state of Rhineland-Palatinate in the most serious single incident, where dozens of people remain missing.

The flooding has been described as a once-in-25-year event.

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 11:17

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‘EU is ready to help’ flood victims, says von der Leyen

Ursula von der Leyen, the president of the European Commission, has said the bloc is “ready to help” the victims of flooding in Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

She added that her thoughts were with the families of those who had died.

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 11:25

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Power cuts affect 200,000 people in west Germany

Around 200,000 households in western Germany do not have access to electricity as a result of flooding, the country’s largest power distribution company has said.

A spokesperson for Westnetz said: “We are trying to resolve the situation with all available hands on deck,”

Many power substations are currently unreachable, as roads remain blocked, they added.

Large parts of the states of North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate are affected by the outage.

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 11:42

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Floods caused by global warming, Greens say

The flooding in Germany is yet another “wake-up” call about the climate crisis, the Greens have said.

Blaming the disaster on global warming, Katrin Goering-Eckardt, the party’s parliamentary leader, told RTL/NTV television: “This is already the impact of the climate catastrophe and this is another wake-up call to make us realise: this is already here.”

Along the Rhine river, cities like Cologne and Hagen experienced their heaviest daily rainfall on record.

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 11:59

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Two die in flooding in Belgium

Two men have died and a 15-year-old girl is missing after flooding in Belgium, according to Reuters.

In the country’s eastern town of Pepinster, 10 houses collapsed and more than 1,000 households were evacuated due to the torrential rain.

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 12:13

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Video: Flooding causes ‘catastrophic’ damage in Germany

More than 20 people have died and dozens remain missing in flooding in Germany and Belgium.

Here is some footage from Germany:

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 12:30

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Video: Aerials of flooded Germany village

Aerials of flooded village in western Germany

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 12:45

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German soldiers help with flood response

More than 200 soldiers have been sent to help with flood-response efforts in North Rhine-Westphalia, a German defence ministry spokesperson has said.

North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate are the states worst-affected by the floods.

Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 13:00

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Rory Sullivan15 July 2021 13:10

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