Deadly floods: German government wants to improve its flood warning system

The floods that devastated part of western Germany have left at least 165 dead, according to a latest report.

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The German government on Monday (July 19) promised to improve the national disaster warning system, criticized since the devastating floods that hit the country. The death toll was further increased to at least 165 people.

In general, the warning systems for the population during torrential rains, at the origin of the deadly floods in the west of the country, “worked“, in particular via an application for mobile telephones called “Nina”, assured a government spokesperson, Martina Fietz, during a press briefing. “But the experiences we have had during this disaster show that we must do more and better”, she admitted.

Main target of criticism, German civil protection is accused of not having warned the populations concerned in flood-prone areas sufficiently quickly of the seriousness of the floods. The floods have indeed led to massive power cuts and knocked down telecommunications antennas, preventing residents from receiving alerts on time.

Meanwhile, the gruesome count of the dead found in cellars or car wrecks continues. In Rhineland-Palatinate, the region most affected by the disaster, “the death toll is now 117”, compared to 112 previously counted, “and there are 749 injured”, Koblenz police spokeswoman Verena Scheuer told AFP. In North Rhine-Westphalia, the last report on Sunday reported“at least” 47 dead, while one death was to be deplored in Bavaria, in the south of the country, affected by significant floods this weekend.

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