- Title: NETHERLANDS: EMERGENCY SERVICES REMAIN ON FLOOD ALERT
- Date: 3rd February 1995
- Summary: MOOK, DODEWAARD, NEER AND BORGHAREN, NETHERLANDS (FEBRUARY 3, 1995)(RTV - ACCESS ALL) MOOK 1. GV/PAN/SV SUNRISE AS FLOOD WATERS ON MAAS RIVER RECEDE (3 SHOTS) 0.11 2. LV DEPTH INDICATORS ON MAAS RIVER 0.16 3. SLV MAN ON BIKE RIDING PAST MAKESHIFT DYKE 0.20 4. LV SANDBAGS STACKED OUTSIDE CHURCH 0.26 DODEWAARD 5. LV/SV 400 YEAR-OLD INN DE ENGEL WITH FLOOD WATERS NEARBY/INN SIGN (2 SHOTS) 0.35 6. SLV MAN STACKING SAND BAGS AGAINST WOODEN DYKE 0.42 7. SV ANTON KERSTEN CLIMBING OVER DYKE AND INTO BOAT/ FLOODED RIVER (2 SHOTS) 0.58 8. SV KERSTEN EXPLAINING HOW HIS DYKE KEPT THE FLOOD WATERS AT BAY (ENGLISH) 1.23 9. SV PUMPS CLEARING WATER FROM BEHIND DYKE 1.31 NEER 10. SV TRACKS MAN WALKING THROUGH FLOOD WATERS TO GET TO HOUSE/SHOWING HOW HIGH THE WATER HAD RISEN (2 SHOTS) 1.40 11. LV/VARIOUS INT. HOUSE WITH ALL FURNITURE REMOVED AS CLEANUP BEGINS (3 SHOTS) 1.53 12. SV/VARIOUS WATER PUMPED OUT FROM UNDER HOUSE (3 SHOTS) 2.08 13. SLV/ZOOM IN MAN SHOWS SILT LEFT ON FLOOR OF HOUSE AFTER WATER RECEDED/EXT.HOUSE (3 SHOTS) 2.19 BORGHARAN 14. SLV/ZOOM-OUT/SV VAN DRIVING THROUGH FLOOD WATERS AS MAN USES PRESSURE HOSE TO REMOVE MUD FROM GARDEN (4 SHOTS) 2.33 15. SV/ZOOM OUT FAMILY CLEANING UP AFTER FLOOD (2 SHOTS) 2.42 16. SV/VARIOUS WALLS AND FURNITURE DAMAGED BY FLOOD WATERS (4 SHOTS) 2.56 17. SLV MAN WALKING AROUND EDGE OF FLOOD WATERS 2.59 SEQ.8; TRANSCRIPT; KERSTEN: "THE WATER LEVEL WAS HERE AS YOU CAN SEE FROM THE MOISTURE - WHEN THE WAVES WERE HIGH THEY WENT UP TO HERE AND SOMETIMES IT WENT OVER, BUT THE SYSTEM WAS WORKING AbSOLUTELY PERFECT, JUST AFTER TWO MONTHS OF EXISTENCE WE HAD THE BEST TRYING OUT WE COULD GET." Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.
- Embargoed: 18th February 1995 12:00
- Location: MOOK, DODEWAARD, NEER AND BORGHAREN, NETHERLANDS
- Country: Netherlands
- Reuters ID: LVA8LNU7W4PCT65WOVA81ITKHE5X
- Story Text: Emergency services remained on flood alert in the central and eastern Netherlands on Friday (February 3) as the risk of breaking dikes persisted but in the south, thousands of evacuees began the messy task of going back to flooded homes.
A national flood co-ordination centre spokesman said dikes were in a dangerous condition and it would be at least a week before the tens of thousands of people evacuated in central and eastern regions could return home.
Water levels on the Rhine, Maas and Waal rivers were receding at a rate of 30 cm (12 inches) a day.
About a quarter of a million people abandoned their homes during the last week in the Netherlands biggest peacetime evacuation. The army and volunteers have toiled relentlessly to buttress crumbling dikes against the ravages of waters spilling over from swollen rivers and canals.
But in the southern province of Limburg, where flooding began last week, thousands of evacuees were returning to villages like Mook and faced fresh dangers from poisonous metals that have leeched from the great rivers that ship much of Europe's industrial output.
Police warned parents to keep children way from the sludge, which was likely to contain dangerous heavy metals like cadmium.
One man alone in Dodewaard managed to hold his ground against the floodwaters, with a home-made wall he built to protect his 400-year-old inn.
Anton Kersten refused to evacuate his Inn De Engel (The Angel) because he felt sure its future was safeguarded by a wall he had built three months before the floods came.
The wall was made from hundreds of sandbags, wood and concrete posts. It kept back the Waal river's floodwaters and the building has remained mostly dry.
Kersten said experts believed he could not keep the water away - but after spending 100,000 Dutch guilders (58,800 United States dollars) he proved them wrong.
Kersten says his inn is the oldest in Holland.
In other areas, the process of cleaning up after the receding waters had begun. In Neer and Borgharen, people escorted back to their homes by police and soldiers on Thursday were mopping out the silt that caked walls and furniture.
Interior Minister Hans Dijkstal appealed to so-called "disaster tourists" to stay away from the evacuated regions this weekend, when forecasters predict fine and sunny weather.
The floods, which have claimed four lives, brought back bitter memories of February 1, 1953, when 1,835 people in the south perished as the North Sea crashed through defences.
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