Local news translated – Feb. 10, 2023

Graphic by U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart Public Affairs Office

Host Nation Update, Feb. 10, 2023


U.S. military convoy crashed on Autobahn A6 – Recovery work underway – police release accident details

After the accident of a U.S. military convoy loaded with tons of explosives and rockets on the Autobahn 6 between Heilbronn and Nuremberg, the removal of the dangerous goods has been prepared. Early Friday morning, according to police, work began on transferring the material by truck-mounted crane to replacement vehicles belonging to the U.S. Army and recovering the crashed trucks. The A6 was closed for several hours in both directions, in the direction of Heilbronn the road was reopened in the meantime, as a police spokesman said.  In addition, the police announced new details about the circumstances of the accident on Thursday afternoon. According to the report, two tractor-trailers from the convoy of five trucks had collided during an unsuccessful lane change. In the process, the cab of one truck was torn off and the truck caught fire. The driver and passenger were seriously injured, and the two occupants of the second tractor-trailer were slightly injured. Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire. According to police, the explosive transport material was not equipped with detonators and was not damaged, which is why it could be reloaded “without danger” after being assessed by specialists from the U.S. military.  The convoy had been traveling in the direction of Nuremberg when the accident occurred. The scene of the accident was then blocked off over a wide area. As a result of the full closure of both sides of the A6 near Kirchberg an der Jagst, traffic jams stretched for kilometers. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Feb 10,2023)


The Stuttgart region fights against bird flu

Has bird flu now reached Stuttgart? A rapid test on the dead seagulls found at a pond in Obertürkheim over the weekend suggests it has, putting the city on alert. “We have already informed the large poultry farmers and the Wilhelma,” Harald Knitter, spokesman for the city of Stuttgart, said Wednesday. The state capital is already preparing for a possible compulsory stall. Whether the general decree to this but really comes, depends on the results of the Federal Research Institute for Animal Health in Greifswald (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania). This is where the samples and the findings were sent by the experts of the Chemical and Veterinary Investigation Office in Stuttgart in order to obtain the exact official result.  A response can be expected this Thursday or Friday, Knitter said. “However, it is certainly not wrong if private owners also keep their animals indoors until then as a precaution,” emphasizes the spokesman. In Esslingen’s other neighboring district, Böblingen, poultry farmers are already required to keep their birds indoors. There have been 19 cases in total since the beginning of the year in the southwest. No free-range eggs can be sold from the areas with a restriction zone. “However, there is the 16-week rule in the EU to somewhat cushion the loss for farms,” explains a spokeswoman for the state farmers’ association. The eggs may then continue to be labeled free-range for 16 weeks. If the stall obligation extends beyond this period, the enterprises must sell their eggs with the reference to them being kept indoor.  According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), bird flu is a highly contagious disease caused by influenza A viruses in birds. In humans, the disease can be very severe, but transmission from animals is not so easy. So far, no corresponding disease has been reported in Germany. “Based on previous experience, it appears that the viruses are only transmitted from animals to humans in close contact with sick or dead birds and their products or excretions,” according to the RKI’s assessment. So anyone who is out and about on the Neckar and discovers dead seagulls should not touch them under any circumstances.  (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Feb 9, 2023)


After vending machines were blown up in the Böblingen district – Banks strengthen security measures

Since 2021, there have also been several detonations in the Böblingen district. ATMs were blown up in Rutesheim-Perouse, once in Sindelfingen-Viehweide, once in Breuningerland Sindelfingen and once in Bondorf. Since the number of such blasts has increased nationwide in the last two years, banks in the district are now increasingly looking into possible tightening of security measures for their ATMs.

However, local banks such as the Kreissparkasse or the Vereinigte Volksbanken prefer to keep quiet about protective measures. Nevertheless, anyone who as a bank customer has recently wanted to withdraw money from an ATM at a savings bank branch at night will have noticed that some of the machines not only have information stickers on them to warn criminals of attempted explosions, but that some of the vestibules are also closed at late hours.  The potential threat could be particularly high for those ATM locations that are located in residential buildings or close to highways and are therefore attractive to groups of perpetrators – a circumstance that the perpetrators from Breuningerland also took advantage of.  The perpetrators of the Sindelfingen ATM blast, who blew up two ATMs in the Breuningerland shopping center on October 29, 2021, and escaped with a haul of 300,000 euros, have not yet been caught. The investigation is still in the hands of the Böblingen criminal investigation department. More exact statements could not make the police headquarters Ludwigsburg at the time.  Last week, they were able to report a breakthrough in similar cases: 51 ATM burglaries in both federal states are said to be the work of a gang from the Netherlands.  (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Feb 10, 2023)


Classic car show from February 23 to 26 at the exhibition center near the airport (Messe)

Numerous partners will be there: dealers with classic cars, sports cars, supercars, 4×4 off-roaders and custom bikes, as well as service providers, artists and lifestyle suppliers.   Motorworld’s numerous partners score with extraordinary neo-classics and historic exhibits: Mercedes-AMG will be exhibiting a Mercedes-AMG GT3 Edition 55, a special model limited to 5 units, which was hand-built to mark AMG’s 55th anniversary in 2022.  Sporty and with a lot of horsepower continues: The Mohr Group shows a Brabus GLE 800, McLaren Stuttgart a McLaren GT. Merz & Rössler Automobile will be there with a Mercedes-Benz G 63 AMG – Brabus 800 Widestar and a G-Class 230 GE hunting car in camouflage design, among others.

Emil Frey Exclusive Cars puts Aston-Martin Stuttgart in the spotlight.  Ponton Manufaktur makes the hearts of classic car lovers beat faster with a Mercedes-Benz Ponton 220 SE Cabrio from 1960, a model for which all kinds of stories can be told.  For fans of historic racing, JMF-Trading will bring a restored Chrysler 8 Roadster CD, a pre-war racing car from 1930. The oldest automobile on the Motorworld stand is a Hanomag 2/10 hp from 1925, the first Dekra service vehicle.  Visitors young and old will be able to enjoy exciting duels on the Carrera DIG 132 racetrack, which “Carrera Toys” will be bringing to Stuttgart. For almost 60 years, the brand has been thrilling generations of car and motorsport fans around the world with its legendary Carrera racetracks, and this year it will once again be providing racing excitement at the Motorworld stand.  Info: Retro-Classics will take place from 23 to 26 February at the Stuttgart Trade Fair Centre. Open on February 23 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., from February 24 to 26 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. See also at www.motorworld.de and at www.retro-classics.de on the net. (BB.heute.de, Feb 9)


What will the weather be like in Stuttgart?

After the winter has once again shown its frosty side in Stuttgart in recent days, meteorologist Peter Crouse now expects higher temperatures. “On Friday and Saturday, we expect highs of six to seven degrees,” says the expert from the German Weather Service. For Sunday and Monday, up to nine degrees Celsius can be expected. The high-pressure area is directly over Central and Western Europe and therefore provides Germany with a few sunny and dry days.  There will be moderate frost Friday and Saturday nights and at least light frost at night in the following days. So in the near future, you will still have to scrape the car free.  All those who are longing for the end of winter will have to be patient a little longer. The beginning of spring depends on the definition. Among others, there is an astronomical and a meteorological beginning of spring. Astronomically, “Lenz” comes on the day when it is light and dark for the same length of time. This so-called equinox (astronomically “equinox”) occurs when the zenith of the sun crosses the line of the equator. In the northern hemisphere, this marks the beginning of spring, while in the south it heralds the start of autumn. For the year 2023, this was calculated for March 20 at 10:24 pm.

When does spring begin for meteorologists?

As Peter Crouse explains, meteorologists have settled on March 1 as the start of spring. The end then follows three months later on May 31. This was done for statistical reasons, he says, because weather phenomena can then be better compared if the year is divided into four equal blocks.  (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Feb 10)