Severe weather on July 19, 1966

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On July 19, 1966 there were severe storms with hailstorms, tornadoes and downpours in the Weser and Leinebergland , Northern Hesse and the Harz foreland . The Hameln region was particularly hard hit , where the break of a dam above Fischbeck am Süntel caused severe flooding and severe damage. Serious damage also occurred in the Hameln and Coppenbrügge area. The storms claimed a human life in Arzell in northern Hesse.

Break of the dam near Fischbeck

Course of the disaster

After two days of continuous rain, which had caused water levels to rise sharply in all of the receiving waters as well as in the dams of the Harz Mountains and the Edertalsperre , a thunderstorm front with heavy rain fell over the Weser Uplands, the Leinebergland and northern Hesse in the early evening hours . In the course of two hours, precipitation of 80 millimeters fell on the Süntel , which could no longer be absorbed by the water-saturated soil and the water-filled karst of the Süntel and flowed directly into the nutrient stream and Hamel .

The outflowing precipitation hit a retention basin located around 300 meters above the outskirts of Fischbeck in the area of ​​the Nahrenbach and initially backed up as far as Höfingen. About an hour after the storm began, the then six meter high earth dam of the retention basin, which was put into operation in 1906, was flooded. Since there was no bottom outlet, the retention basin overflowed in an uncontrolled manner without being noticed.

As a result of the overflow, the Nahrenbach rises sharply and the first large-scale floods in Fischbeck and in Höfingen above the dam. Around 6:50 p.m., according to other sources around 9:00 p.m., unnoticed by the residents of Fischbeck, who were busy protecting their houses and recovering furniture, agricultural equipment and cattle, the dam of the retention basin broke at a width of about 30 meters, so that its entire contents, about 164,000 cubic meters, suddenly poured down the stream in the form of a tidal wave about four meters high.

A total of 1000 residents were only able to save themselves to higher floors of their houses at the last minute and were trapped there by the floods.

In the village of Fischbeck, 150 residential houses are damaged by this tidal wave, 50 of them seriously. Five buildings were completely destroyed. All supply lines in the village were also destroyed. There were high losses of cattle, human lives were not to be mourned due to fortunate circumstances. Serious damage also occurred in the town of Blümenau, which is located below Fischbeck and now belongs to Hessisch-Oldendorf. The federal road 83 near Hameln was just as impassable as the Hameln – Löhne railway line running at the foot of the Süntel in the entire Hameln region.

Relief efforts

The disaster alert set numerous civil and military aid organizations in motion. The focus was initially on saving people, then on restoring the destroyed supply lines. In addition to the fire brigade , the technical relief organization and the Red Cross , pioneers from the German Armed Forces and the British Rhine Army were also on duty.

Consequences of the disaster

The Fischbeck flood disaster in July 1966 had shown that the Nutrenbach Dam, which was put into operation in 1906, offered insufficient protection for the settlement areas below it. In 1968/69 and 1999, the dam of the dam was reinforced and raised from 6 m to 11.90 m. In addition, a regular drainage system was integrated into the dam so that the contents of the reservoir can be drained in a controlled manner. By increasing and strengthening the facility, its capacity grew from around 170,000 cubic meters at the time of the flood disaster to 935,000 cubic meters today. In addition, the dam was equipped with alarm systems that are connected to the fire service center of the Hameln-Pyrmont district.

Rest of the Weserbergland

Hamel catchment area

There was also severe flooding from the Hamel, which rises on the eastern slope of the Süntel. The most spectacular damage occurred at the Afferde substation, which was partially flooded around midnight, resulting in a total power failure in Hameln. Floods also occurred in the Rohrsen district of Hamelin. At times, the Hamel bridges in the Hamelin city area were not accessible at all, or only high-rise vehicles.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ F. Hamm: Natural History Chronicle of Northwest Germany . Hanover 1976, p. 318.
  2. a b private website.
  3. a b c Hamburger Abendblatt of July 21, 1966.
  4. A walk in Fischbeck . Retrieved February 5, 2012.
  5. The water stood 1.75 m high in the room . In: Deister and Weser newspaper of March 8, 2009. Retrieved on February 3, 2012.
  6. Deister and Weser newspaper, No. 167 of July 21, 1966: Up to half a meter under water / Switchgear paralyzed / On the failure of the power supply in Hameln