Local news translated – June 6, 2024

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

Host Nation Update, June 6, 2024

Stuttgart Region after the floods – How citizens can help cleaning-up

Now that the water is slowly receding and the authorities have given the all-clear in many places, numerous flood victims in the Stuttgart region are busy cleaning up. However, Rudersberg still without electricity in some places.

Broken furniture, mud and garbage are piling up in front of houses – there is a lot to do. In view of the terrible images, many people in the region are wondering how they can provide support. But rushing into action can cause new problems. We clarify the most important questions and answers about practical help on the ground.
“Moving uncoordinated into the affected areas is not a good idea. In case of doubt, people endanger themselves, there is a risk of landslides, electric shocks etc. In some places, the condition of the buildings is problematic. Deploying on your own can be dangerous,” explains Sven Knödler, crisis manager of the Red Cross in the Rems-Murr district.  Rudersberg’s mayor Raimon Ahrens agrees with his assessment. “You shouldn’t drive here unnecessarily; the traffic is a major hindrance.” Rudersberg in the Rems-Murr district, one of the particularly affected communities in Baden-Württemberg, is already struggling with a kind of flood tourism.

The situation was similar a few kilometers further on. “We had to contend with traffic jams outside Miedelsbach on Monday afternoon,” says Dominique Wehrle, press spokesperson for the town of Schorndorf. The local authorities are asking for targeted help.  “Anyone who really wants to help should call our hotline at the town hall beforehand,” explains Raimon Ahrens, Mayor of Rudersberg. The citizens’ hotline can be reached on 0 71 83/30 05-0. “We need people who can help dispose of the garbage and have a truck, van or trailer, for example. The garbage has to be taken out of the houses,” says Ahrens. Private individuals can obtain details of the disposal process from the town hall.  We have set up a coordination office through the town,” says Dominique Wehrle, press spokesperson for the town of Schorndorf. Helpers can get in touch by phone or email on 0 71 81/6 02 60 11 or at the email address engagement@schorndorf.de.  (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, June 4, 2024)


Leonberg area – Temporary solution protection against flooding

The residents of Glems (Leonberg) have been largely spared the destructive consequences of the heavy rainfall over the past few days. For the municipalities, the question was rather: Are the protective measures taken after the floods in 2010 correct and sufficient?

Is the flood protection holding? Are the measures decided by the Ditzingen municipal council in recent years working? “Yes”, says Ditzingen Mayor Ulrich Bahmer, “you can say that quite clearly”.  Over the past few days, the mayor has inspected the critical points in the town and has been in contact with the building yard and the fire department. “It hasn’t rained as much now as it did in 2010,” says Bahmer. But when it rained heavily two weeks ago, the water level at the Glemsbrücke bridge rose significantly. If nothing had been done for flood protection since 2010, the bridge would probably have been flooded again, he points out. However, the situation remained manageable and calm.

The city has invested a lot of money in flood protection in recent years. This consists of a number of individual measures but, as in Ditzingen’s city center, it is above all the sum of the changes that is effective. On the one hand, the buildings themselves have been protected, such as the sports hall in Glemsaue. In 2013, three years after the floods, earth embankments were built to divert rainwater around the building. In addition, the municipal council decided to require flood protection well above the legal requirements for all construction work from then on. Buildings must be protected against heavy rainfall, which statistically only occurs once every hundred years. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, June 5, 2024)


After knife attack on police officer in Mannheim – Perpetrator still not fit for questioning

The perpetrator who killed a police officer with a knife on Mannheim’s market square on
Friday is still not fit for questioning, according to the State Criminal Police Office. Even five days after the fatal knife attack in Mannheim, the perpetrator is still not fit for questioning. This was confirmed by a spokesperson for the Baden-Württemberg State Office of Criminal Investigation on Wednesday in response to an inquiry.
On Friday, a 25-year-old Afghan injured five participants at a rally organized by the Islam-critical movement Pax Europa as well as a police officer with a knife.
The 29-year-old officer, Rouven Laur, later succumbed to his injuries. Another officer shot the attacker. He subsequently underwent surgery and has not been questioned since. The perpetrator last lived in Heppenheim, Hesse. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, June 5, 2024)


Weather for Baden-Württemberg in the coming days

After the enormous amounts of rain over the past few days, the weather situation has calmed down somewhat. Residents in Stuttgart and the region can breathe a sigh of relief in the coming days.  The weather in the coming days will be much more pleasant than at the weekend, which was characterized by heavy rainfall and flooding in parts of Baden-Württemberg.  According to a spokesperson for the German Weather Service (DWD), high-pressure system “Willi” will dominate the meteorological conditions in Baden-Württemberg on Tuesday, ensuring pleasant temperatures of 21 to 24 degrees Celsius and sunshine.
Wednesday will remain mild, but the region will then increasingly come under the influence of low-pressure system “Swantje”. According to the forecast, a cold front will move in from the west, which will also bring a few short showers in the north of the country. “But these are just a few raindrops – nothing dramatic,” assures the spokesperson.  (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, June 5, 2024)