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Violent storms wreak havoc in Germany; over 40 lives lost in floods, many missing

Several homes were swept away or collapsed, and dozens were reported missing. Tens of thousands of people have been displaced, many more are without electricity.

Thunderstorms wreak havoc in Germany many dead in floods, many missing-VPN
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Rhineland-Palatinate, First Published Jul 15, 2021, 9:54 PM IST
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At least 42 people lives have been lost in Germany due to floods caused by record rains. 

Several homes were swept away or collapsed, and dozens were reported missing. Tens of thousands of people have been displaced, many more are without electricity.

At least 70 people are reported to be missing after the Ahr river that flows into the Rhine burst its banks. 

Media reports said the worst of the flooding is in the states of Rhineland-Palatinate and North Rhine-Westphalia.

Malu Dreyer, President of Rheinland Pfalz, said, "It is a catastrophe. There are dead, missing and many are still in danger."

The army has been mobilized for relief and rescue operations after, according to some estimates, parts of the country received about 2 months of rain in just 48 hours.

Media reports said that about 2 lakh households in western Germany were left without electricity.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is in the United States to meet President Joe Biden, said she was shocked by the disaster.

Merkel assured flood victims that they could rely on the fact assured that their state -- at the federal, regional and community levels -- will do all it can to save lives, avert dangers and alleviate suffering in the most difficult conditions.

The last time, Germany witnessed mass deaths due to floods was in 2002.

Armin Laschet, the premier of the North Rhine-Westphalia state, blamed global warming for the extreme weather. 

Such events will keep happening over and over, he said, adding that now the focus should be on speeding up climate protection measures globally as climate change is not confined to one area.

The record rainfall in Western Europe has caused major rivers to burst their banks and flood cities. At least six people have lost their lives in neighbouring Belgium.

And the situation does not seem to be improving any time soon. The German Weather Service has warned that the country's southwestern parts could receive heavy rainstorms on Thursday. The continuous downpour is expected to continue till Friday evening.

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