Limburg lifts state of emergency; Tourists welcome
Limburg is no longer in a state of emergency, Antoin Scholten, chairman of Veiligheidsregio Limburg-Noord and mayor of Venlo, announced in a press conference on Tuesday evening. All emergency ordinances were revoked, and with that, tourists are welcome to visit the province again, NOS reports.
The Maas river's water level has now dropped enough in Noord- and Midden-Limburg for the state of emergency to be lifted, Scholten said. "We have scaled down from Grip 4 to Grip 2."
There are still seven places in the province where people can't walk over the dikes yet because they still have to be checked, and the Maas is not yet open for recreational shipping. But the situation is safe enough for emergency ordinances to no longer be needed.
The VieCuri hospital in Venlo, which was evacuated on Friday, is reopening today. Some 240 patients were transferred to other hospitals in the region. Those whose care can best be continued in Venlo, will be transferred back today.
Scholten thanked all emergency services and announced that an independent and external evaluation will be done to assess the province's response.
Now that the emergency situation is over, the cleanup can begin. The Ministry of Defense deployed soldiers to help the Limburg Water Board with the cleanup and repair work. Among other things, soldiers will help remove 60 thousand sandbags, and check dozens of kilometers of streams and canals, RTL Nieuws reported.
The Ministry of Defense said that the Water Board does not have the capacity to complete all the cleanup and repair work itself before the weekend. It is important that this work is done by the weekend, when more rain is expected. All canals and streams must then be able to drain their water freely, so that water levels do not rise unnecessarily.