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WEATHER

Heavy rain washes road away

Bad weather caused severe damage in parts of eastern Germany on Tuesday and Wednesday with a mudslide leaving several homes without power.

Heavy rain washes road away
A mudslide ripped up the road in Mei├čen. Photo: DPA

The mudslide in Meißen, Saxony, destroyed a street and cellars had to be pumped out. 

In Dresden the fire service was called to 200 incidents including to damaged streets covered in mud and debris.

And in the state of Saxony-Anhalt heavy rain also caused a mudslide. A house had to be evacuated in the town of Wettin after being hit by the mass of earth. Several roads were also flooded in the area.

Widespread floods did not hit southern areas of the state of Brandenburg as feared but the fire service was called to pump out basements and to clear fallen trees.

CLICK HERE for photos of the damage

State weather service DWD forecast rain for the rest of Wednesday and for most of Thursday in eastern Germany.

It is a year since floods caused serious damage across the east of Germany.

CLICK HERE for a weather forecast

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WILDFIRES

2022 sees record wildfire destruction in Europe: EU

Europe's blistering summer may not be over yet, but 2022 is already breaking records, with nearly 660,000 hectares ravaged since January, according to the EU's satellite monitoring service.

2022 sees record wildfire destruction in Europe: EU

And while countries on the Mediterranean have normally been the main seats of fires in Europe, this year, other countries are also suffering heavily.

Fires this year have forced people to flee their homes, destroyed buildings and burned forests in EU countries, including Austria, Croatia, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain.

Some 659,541 hectares (1.6 million acres) have been destroyed so far, data from the European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS) showed, setting a record at this point in the year since data collection began in 2006.

Europe has suffered a series of heatwaves, forest fires and historic drought that experts say are being driven by human-induced climate change.

They warn more frequent and longer heatwaves are on the way.

The worst-affected country has been Spain, where fire has destroyed 244,924 hectares, according to EFFIS data.

The EFFIS uses satellite data from the EU’s Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS).

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: How the climate crisis is hitting Europe hard

The data comes after CAMS said Friday that 2022 was a record year for wildfire activity in southwestern Europe and warned that a large proportion of western Europe was now in “extreme fire danger”.

“2022 is already a record year, just below 2017,” EFFIS coordinator Jesus San-Miguel said. In 2017, 420,913 hectares had burned by August 13, rising to 988,087 hectares by the end of the year.

“The situation in terms of drought and extremely high temperatures has affected all of Europe this year and the overall situation in the region is worrying, while we are still in the middle of the fire season,” he said.

Since 2010, there had been a trend towards more fires in central and northern Europe, with fires in countries that “normally do not experience fires in their territory”, he added.

“The overall fire season in the EU is really driven mainly by countries in the Mediterranean region, except in years like this one, in which fires also happen in central and northern regions,” he added.

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