Central Europe storms leave seven dead


Seven people have died as heavy storms lashed central Europe, leaving authorities in Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic scrambling to restore rail and road links. Storm “Hewart” had on Sunday pounded the region with cold rains and heavy winds, downing trees and flooding coastal areas and the German port city of Hamburg while leaving 200,000 people without power in western Poland.

In Germany, emergency workers were Monday trying to move a stranded freighter off a sandbank near the East Frisian island of Langeoog in the North Sea. None of the 22 crew were hurt and the ship was intact, authorities said. German police also raised the nationwide death toll from the storm to three, some three weeks after storm “Xavier” killed seven people in northern and eastern Germany.

A 56-year-old man and a 48-year-old woman died after a pleasure boat on Sunday sank in rough waters in the Peenestrom Inlet on the Baltic coast, where another man, also 48, remained missing. Police had earlier reported that a 63-year-old man drowned when a flash flood hit a campsite in Jade Bay on the North Sea.

In the Czech Republic, falling trees killed a woman in a forest near the central city of Trebic and an elderly man on a street in Jicin northeast of Prague. In Poland, a driver died after crashing his car into a fallen tree branch near the northwestern city of Szczecin, and another was killed when a branch hit his car in the western city of Opole.


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