Europe floods: Victims face massive clean-up as waters recede

Europe floods: Victims face massive clean-up as waters recede

Residents of the worst-affected areas struggle to recover from the devastation as flood waters recede.


Residents in regions of Germany and Belgium worst-affected by recent floods have begun the huge task of clearing their neighbourhoods, as the waters begin to recede.

The scale of the damage is becoming clear, as rescue crews continue to look for victims.

At least 170 people have died, and with many still missing the death toll could rise further.

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And there are fears that a dam weakened by the floods could burst.

Inspectors say large parts of the Steinbachtal dam, south-west of the German city of Bonn, have come away leaving it extremely unstable.

Inhabitants of areas downstream have been evacuated, and more people may be asked to leave their homes.

Another dam in Heinsberg district near Düsseldorf burst on Friday night, prompting hundreds of evacuations.

Meanwhile a senior German politician has been criticised for laughing during a visit to affected areas.

Armin Laschet, who is the conservative candidate to replace outgoing Chancellor Angela Merkel, was caught on camera apparently joking with colleagues as President Frank-Walter Steinmeier was expressing sympathy to victims.