Severe storms close schools and flood roads

Severe storms ravaged parts of Germany with gale force winds, hail, lightning and heavy rains, causing flooding and school closures on Tuesday.

Severe storms close schools and flood roads
Rescue workers clear downed trees in Leer. Photo: DPA

The northern states of Lower Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt were hit with the most severe weather, bringing floods and property damage.

Schools in the Leer district of Lower Saxony closed for the day out of concern that students would be hurt by falling trees. Deutsche Bahn reported massive delays due to felled trees on tracks in the area. Meanwhile two drivers lost control of their vehicles on wet roads and collided with trees.

The A31 motorway and an Ems River tunnel were closed briefly due to flooding, police said.

While rain fell at a rate of 25 to 40 litres per square metre in an hour in northern Saxony-Anhalt, the German Weather Service (DWD) cancelled severe weather warnings for western states, calling for thunder storms instead.

Monthly rainfall for this time of year in the region usually averages some 50 litres per square metre, a DWD spokesperson said.

The central state of Hesse also suffered from severe storms. A lightning strike struck a family home in Viernheim setting the roof on fire. Police said the parents were able to escape the home with their 11 and 14-year-old children unharmed.

Police also closed the Lohberg tunnel in southern Hesse after a lightning strike shut down technical operations.

In many places storms arrived after an eerily hot and still morning. The DWD reported the nasty weather was due to subtropical air clashing with a cold front moving from west to east over the country.

Click here for The Local’s weather forecast.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


Weather: Germany sees extreme heat and storms

An extreme heat warning was in place for eastern Germany on Monday, while storms were also set to hit the country.

Weather: Germany sees extreme heat and storms

The German Weather Service (DWD) said temperatures could reach 36C on Monday. 

In the morning, the DWD issued an extreme heat warning for eastern regions, as shown below in the map. 

Map of Germany shows the heat warning in the east on Monday June 27th.

Photo: German Weather Service (DWD)

Forecasters said later on Monday, the south and east of the country would be hit by thunderstorms as well as large hailstones, strong winds and heavy rain.

READ ALSO: Germany sees record temperatures

In the north, west and centre of Germany, forecasters predicted clouds and some showers. Over the course of Monday, heavy thunderstorms with heavy rain, hailstones and strong winds are also possible in the north.

“Thunderstorms have occurred in the past few days and will continue in the coming days, as the established weather situation will remain virtually unchanged,” said a spokesperson from the DWD. 

However, the large temperature differences are striking: in the west of Germany, the mercury will only reach just above 20C in places.

Overnight to Tuesday, the DWD predicts thunderstorms – some of them heavy – from the Baltic Sea to the Alps, and later there is set to be more showers. It could still reach 28C in some places, especially in the east.

The DWD said: “The risk of thunderstorms will remain in the southern half of the country, while the northern half will calm down after the last thunderstorms have moved to Poland.

“This will change again on Wednesday night, when showers and thunderstorms, some of them thundery, as well as heavy rain will make their way north. On Wednesday, it will be quite unsettled with muggy temperatures almost all over the country.”

Forecasters said the weather will remain changeable for the rest of the week, but it should become more settled from next weekend.