German railway: Floods cause $1.5 billion in damage to network

Germany's national railway operator estimates that flooding last week caused damage of 1.3 billion euros ($1.5billion) to its network. This gives another indication of the extent of the destruction.

German railway: Floods cause $1.5 billion in damage to network

Authorities are still trying to figure out the total cost of the floods in eastern Belgium and western Germany that caused the most damage. German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated this week that the damage to the country is severe and that it will take time to fix.

The flooding in Germany resulted in at least 180 deaths, while 31 more were reported in Belgium. This brings the total death toll up to 211.

Deutsche Bahn, a German railway operator, stated that more than 50 bridges, 180 levels crossings, almost 40 signal boxes, and over 1000 signal masts as well as energy and light systems and station elevators had been damaged.

Volker Hentschel is a board member of the company's DB Netz Infrastructure division. He stated that "never before has our infrastructure suffered such severe damage in one day." According to him, the initial estimate of the damage caused by flooding to the stations and railway network is around 1.3 billion Euros.

Deutsche Bahn is owned by the government and has promised to get started on reconstruction efforts as soon as possible. Hentschel stated that it would take months, if not even years, to restore all the infrastructure, but the company is optimistic of being able to repair 80% by the end this year.

DWD, Germany's national weather agency, states that while localized storms may be possible in flood-affected areas on Saturday, they are not expected to bring the rain that would warrant a warning.

In Turkey, flooding has also occurred in recent days. One person was being treated at the hospital for injuries. Friday's work was still ongoing to locate a missing person after floods in Artvin, in Turkey's northeast, began Wednesday. More than 450 people had to be evacuated.

Last week, at least six people died and two others were left behind after flooding in Rize province.

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