More thunderstorms predicted to soak southern and western regions

After violent storms raged through southern Germany, Hesse and North Rhine-Westphalia on Thursday, more thunderstorms are predicted to arrive on Friday.

More thunderstorms predicted to soak southern and western regions
Pedestrians caught in the rain in Essen on Thursday. Photo: DPA

Following flooded streets and basements and flight cancellations in Stuttgart and Frankfurt due to the extreme weather, meteorologists at the German Weather Service (DWD) have forecast heavy rain to hit again from noon onwards.

“From midday in the south, middle and some western parts of Germany, there’s a danger of local thunderstorms and lightning,” the DWD reported on Friday.

In a short time, between 25 and 40 litres of rain per square metre could fall and some areas could see up to 60 litres per square metre, according to the DWD. There’s also the danger of hail and strong winds of up to 75 kilometres per hour.

While the thunderstorms are predicted to cease in the evening on Friday and into Saturday, the stormy weather could continue for parts of the deep south.

But the north and east of the country will largely be free of thunderstorms on Friday due to warm and dry air, the DWD added.

By the evening on Thursday the strong storms had for the most part ceased in regions across Germany.

Prior to that though flight cancellations took place at two German airports.

Check-in at Stuttgart airport was closed for hours on Thursday evening due to the violent storms. 

“Within a very short time, streets, cellars and underpasses were flooded in Stuttgart,” said a spokesman for the city’s police headquarters on Friday morning. In Reutlingen, Esslingen and Mannheim, local fire brigades were called out numerous times due to reports of flooded cellars and streets. 

Since the Rhine region in Hesse was also affected by the storms, no planes were able to take off and land at Frankfurt Airport in the evening. According to airport operator Fraport, about 180 flights were cancelled.

A Deutsche Bahn spokesperson said that some of the tracks in the underground area of Frankfurt's main station had to be closed due to flooding. Three out of four S-Bahn lines in the central station had to be temporarily closed.

Further regions and cities affected by Thursday's thunderstorms include the Sauerland, Ruhr and Rhineland regions in North Rhine-Westphalia as well as Munich and the Upper Bavarian and Upper Franconian regions in Bavaria.

SEE ALSO: Thunderstorms to bring rare ‘blood rain’ to Germany

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What temperatures can we expect in Germany this week?

Parts of Germany will see another heatwave this week as temperatures soar.

What temperatures can we expect in Germany this week?

The German Weather Service (DWD) has predicted that the mercury will climb in some regions of to around 34C this week. 

“After low pressure ‘Karin’ gave parts of Germany rain, sometimes in large quantities, high pressure ‘Piet’ is now back in pole position,” said meteorologist Lars Kirchhübel of the DWD.

This high pressure zone will dominate the weather in large parts of western and central Europe over the coming days, the weather expert said, adding that it will reach Germany too. 

On Monday temperatures remained fairly cool across the country after a weekend of showers, but they are set to climb over the course of the week, particularly on Wednesday and Thursday. Forecasters predict it could reach 32C in Stuttgart and 33C in Cologne on Thursday. Locally, temperatures could reach 34C. 

However, from the Oder and Neisse rivers to the Erzgebirge mountains and southeast Bavaria, denser clouds and some showers are to be expected. This is due to a high-level low pressure system over the Balkan region, according to forecasters. Short showers are also possible in the Black Forest.

“In most of the rest of the country, high ‘Piet’ will be able to hold its ground,” said Kirchhübel.

READ ALSO: Heavy rain in Bavaria swells rivers, but flooding avoided

At the end of the week, thunderstorms are forecast but temperatures are expected to remain high. 

August in Germany ‘too dry’

According to the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, August as a whole – apart from a few areas in eastern Germany – will be too dry compared to the multi-year average.

The Black Forest, the High Rhine and the Allgäu to the Bavarian Forest, however, are not expected to have any major problems due to the high rainfall of the past few days.

“Looking at Rhineland-Palatinate, the southern half of Hesse, the western half of North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Franconia shows a different picture,” said Kirchhübel. In the last 30 days, only about 10 percent of the usual level of precipitation fell in some places.

“At some stations, no precipitation at all has been measured in August,” added Kirchhübel, referencing Würzburg as an example.

Rainfall at the weekend caused the water in the Rhine river to rise slightly. In Emmerich, the water level reached a positive value again after the historic low of the past few days: in the morning, it showed three centimetres – an increase of six centimetres compared to the previous day.

The water level also rose by several centimetres at the other measuring points in North Rhine-Westphalia: in Cologne, the level rose to 80cm and in Düsseldorf to 38cm.

READ ALSO: Damaged freighter blocks traffic at drought-hit Rhine

Despite this encouraging trend, the Waterways and Shipping Authority said it did not expect a huge improvement in water levels in the foreseeable future due to more hot weather coming.