Monday, November 15, 2010

Worst Flooding in Belgium in 50 Years

I finally saw a ray of sunlight after a continuous downpour since last Thursday. Last Thursday (11 Nov) was a holiday here in Belgium. It was de Wapenstilstandsdag, which is meant to commemorate the end of the 1st World War. Hubby decided to take Friday off, so it was a long weekend for us, and we were contemplating to go to Bastogne to visit the war museum. Alas, it started to pour like nobody's business on Thursday, so we waited til Friday and Saturday but the rain didn't stop. Hence we were literally stuck at home for all 4 days with this horrid weather.

Although it kept raining for the past 4 days, it wasn't particularly heavy where I stay, so I was kind of shocked to hear over the news on Saturday that certain regions of Belgium such as Oost Vlaanderen and some parts of Wallonia have been severely affected by the flood. The extent of damage is so serious that the victims have to be evacuated from their houses and put up overnight elsewhere til the water subsides. The media declares this as the worst flood in Belgium for the past 50 years, or even 100 years.

So far there have been 4 casualties, mostly old folks who got trapped and drowned in the rising water. Hundreds of families across the country are affected, a few schools in the affected regions are closed as the classrooms are knee deep in water, and the fire brigades have been kept busy pumping out water and rescuing people trapped in their homes.

The weather is now very cold and wet, so I can imagine when your house is flooded and all your furnitures are soaked knee-deep in muddy water, and your car in the garage is also submerged in water and cannot be started, what a heartbreak it will be. It is not a good start for the cold bleak winter and definitely not something you would look forward to when you come home. Let's all pray that the water quickly subsides, and the victims can all return to their homes soonest possible. :)

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