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WEATHER

Raging storm wallops Germany, leaving one man dead

A Bavarian man was reported dead and a train conductor in Baden-Württemberg severely injured on Wednesday after severe storms swept through the country overnight.

Raging storm wallops Germany, leaving one man dead
Photo: DPA

A 26-year-old man was driving an all-terrain vehicle near Hauzenberg in Passau county when a tree fell on him and he later died of his injuries, police reported.

Several other people in the region were injured in weather-related accidents too. In Waldenreut a man fell from his roof after attempting to repair storm damage and suffered a shoulder injury.

Click here for a photo gallery of storm damage around Germany.

Meanwhile a woman near Waldkirchen was hospitalised after being struck by lightning in her car.

A family of four camping near Ottach in lower Bayern narrowly escaped with their lives when heavy gusts pushed their camper wagon 30 metres into the Danube river.

Police closed the A8 motorway between Adelzhausen and Odelzhausen due to heavy rainfall and gale force winds overnight.

Uprooted trees caused most of the 140 accidents police reported overnight. Many residents also reported flooded cellars.

The tempest also hit the world’s largest hops-growing area of Hallertau. Farmers feared more than 2,500 hectares of the total 15,000 hectares planted were damaged by heavy rain.

In the nearby state of Baden-Württemberg, a train derailed after hitting several uprooted trees on the tracks. The conductor was badly injured when a tree bored into the driving compartment, and 75 passengers were evacuated, police reported.

A farm near Amtzell caught fire due to lightning, burning 10 cows in a barn to death and causing some €200,000 in damages.

In Konstanz near the Bodensee police reported that the city was covered with at least 10 centimetres of hail for a time. Wind gusts as high as 113 kilometres per hour were also recorded. Train traffic to the city had to be blocked to clean up felled trees and damaged power lines. Authorities estimated several million euros in hail and wind damage to roofs, windows and vehicles.

“It looks like a bomb went off here,” a police spokesperson said.

Authorities also closed roads in Esslingen due to falling trees and the several flights from the Stuttgart airport were delayed after the runway closed due to lightning in the early evening.

In the north, on the Weser River near Bremerhaven, police reported that strong winds pushed a Norwegian freighter into three other boats while it was in the docks. In a separate incident a Lebanese ship sustained damage and lost a container overboard.

In Braunschweig, police received more than 100 calls for emergency assistance when trees were uprooted, blocking roads and doors to people’s homes. A spokesperson for the fire department said no one there was injured.

As the nasty weather moved south, parts of Austria were also walloped with thunder storms, heavy rain and strong winds throughout Tuesday night. More than 2,700 lightning strikes were recorded in the states of Salzburg and Upper Austria. In Switzerland, a tree landed on a 31-year-old man while he was driving.

Click here for The Local’s weather forecast.

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POLITICS

IN PICTURES: Germany hosts G7 summit with Bavarian twist

G7 leaders are meeting in Bavaria to discuss important issues including Russia's war on Ukraine and the food crisis. The event is known for producing memorable pictures. Here's a look at the best images and tweets so far.

IN PICTURES: Germany hosts G7 summit with Bavarian twist

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The Group of Seven wealthy nations is holding their annual summit in the stunning surroundings of the Bavarian Alps. 

The world leaders are engaged in talks at the Schloss Elmau with a focus on Russia’s war on Ukraine, climate change, energy, the global food crisis and rising inflation. 

The G7 gatherings are known known for producing some memorable photos and amusing moments, and this year is no exception. Here’s a look at the best so far. 

When the G7 summit started on Sunday, the southern state of Bavaria became the standout attraction. 

Leaders of the nations involved – Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the USA – were given traditional Bavarian welcomes. 

Spearheaded by Bavarian premier Markus Söder, the leaders were greeted by people clad in Bavarian costumes, such as the dirndl. 

It sparked heated debates on how Germany is portrayed to the rest of the world.  

READ ALSO: Can Scholz create a Merkel-like buzz at the G7 in Bavaria?

Journalist Mathieu von Rohr said on Twitter: “It’s hard to imagine what Söder would have done to Germany’s image in the world as chancellor.”

Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada, walks past people wearing traditional Bavarian costumes after his arrival at Munich airport on June 26th. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Daniel Karmann

Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, walks past people wearing traditional Bavarian costume after his arrival at Munich airport on June 26th.

The left wing newspaper Taz on Monday led with a front page that included this headline: “Finally, indigenous peoples at the G7 summit”.

READ ALSO: Why Bavaria does politics differently to the rest of Germany

The photo of US President Joe Biden signing his name in the Bavarian guest book to Germany produced lots of good captions. 

Nathan Ma poked fun at Germany’s infamous overly complicated contracts that are hard to get out of.

Commentators in Germany have also been making their views known about the events at the summit. 

German broadcaster BR said in an opinion article that the opening G7 event was “like a Monty Python sketch”.

Writer Max Büch said: “Yes, it’s embarrassing that Joe Biden is being coerced by Markus Söder to sign the guestbook at the airport.”

He added: “But people in traditional costume are not embarrassing per se. Even if taz’s ‘indigenous peoples at the G7 summit’ is meant satirically, the title hits a very true core of the image that the rest of Germany still has of Bavaria.”

The southern German traditions continued with Schuhplattler, a traditional style of folk dance popular in the regions of Bavaria and Tyrol. 

“Bavaria makes up perhaps 10 percent of Germany,” one journalist said in another tweet on the Schuhplattler video. “But 90 percent of people abroad think this is all of us.

Bavarian premier Markus Söder defended the opening ceremony. 

He said on Twitter: “Bavaria is the land of homeland and custom: many thanks to our traditional costume associations, musicians and mountain riflemen for their support in welcoming the G7 heads of state. They present the Free State and our traditions with great pride. It was a great backdrop.”

Like every year, the pictures of G7 leaders joking around and getting up, close and personal have also been commented on.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz signals to the other G7 leaders during a photo shoot at Elmau. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Michael Kappeler
 
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz signals to the other G7 leaders during a photo shoot at Elmau.
 
We’d love to be a fly on the wall for the private conversations being held between the leaders. Here German Chancellor Olaf Scholz looks on in amusement at British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at Elmau on June 26th. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Peter Kneffel

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson at Elmau on June 26th.

The lack of women G7 leaders was also commented on. 

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