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Central Europe hit by deadly floods

Central Europe hit by deadly floods
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In Europe, the human cost of flash floods is much smaller but heavy downpours over the weekend have caused significant damage.

At least 15 people have been killed in Poland, the Czech Republic, Germany and Lithuania.

Poland is still recovering from major flooding in May and June that claimed some two dozen lives. In the latest bout of extreme weather, rivers overflowed their banks and a dam burst in the southwest of the country.

In the Czech Republic, people have been evacuated from some of the worst-hit towns in the north. It is like nothing they have ever known.

“I have lived here for 64 years and the water has never overrun the road here before,” said a man in Raspenava in the Liberec region.

With hundreds of homes still deprived of power and drinking water, the government has met in emergency session to evaluate the situation.

The eastern German states of Saxony and Brandenburg remain on alert after water levels hit record highs. In the city of Goerlitz, the cost of the damage is expected to run into millions of euros.

Goerlitz resident Jens Wolfram complained that authorities had not provided food and drink. Local tap water is apparently contaminated, he said, after the water treatment plant was flooded.

While water levels in many areas have now eased, severe damage has already been done. Germany is expecting further heavy rain on Friday.