This warm, wet summer has made for some stormy weather and some spectacular clouds!
One the weekend following the snow, the rain fell and fell and fell. Sunday it was heavy and continuous for over 36 hours. The siren which had been going with snow problems was now going for cellars to be pumped out. Then on Karneralm, there was a landslide, and a power transformer slid down the hill and the water power station was flooded. Families were evacuated.
Then there was a mudslide behind a house in Ramingstein and towards Tamsweg. Roads were flooded, rivers burst banks. By Monday morning, you couldn’t move far as roads were shut as the clear-up operation began.
The road up to Burg Finstergrun was all but washed away.
In Kendlebruck, a wooden house was turned around 360 degrees by water.
Our local railway was totally taken out by a mudslide, the tracks being pushed up in the air like a fairground ride. Stadl was declared an emergency area. The railway might not be repaired until Christmas.
All over Salzburgerland, Carinthia and Tyrol, similar stories came in, two houses being knocked over by a landslide in Bad Gastein. Such heartbreak after the damage done by the heavy snow. The farmers who had been cut off with no electricity due to the snow, were now facing being washed away, Muhr at the end of the Lungau is only just out of being an emergency area.
By Wednesday, our road was reopened by the herculean efforts of the local council workers. The mudslides will take longer. Here in Austria where all the councils have their own teams and machinery and a local fire brigade, help was quick and efficient. I take my hat off to them all.
Now we have a few days of relative peace and dry. I’m praying for a mild winter with not a lot of snow in the valleys!
I went back recently to see how the water protection works have gone on, and was relieved to find the works finished.
The bear trap wooden sticks have been mostly backfilled to redirect the stream.
Most odd sort of sculpture at the end, death of a hut?
There was rain all around me. I was watching it coming over Aineck.
I only just made it back before it hit.
Swingle didn’t care!
A week to the day, the rains came down again. I came home at Eleven on Saturday night and it had just started raining, at Six am the next morning the siren went off. Great. I staggered to the window and couldn’t believe how high the Mur was. When I surfaced properly an hour later, we could see the Fire-engine across the river, there must have been a landslide.
Not much ater we were out photoing and could see the river had dropped a bit, but it was over the access to our local bridge, we haven’t seen that since 2007. The day was grey, so we imagined that the worst was over, and decided to take the train into Tamsweg and walk back and take some more photos. No train, so we popped around to the neighbours on the other side of the river, to find the daft Firemen had taped off their road so technically they couldn’t drive out! Obviously forgotten the holiday house. It seemed the whole Murweg was shut as a precaution. As we left, the rain came down again and lasted for the rest of the day, so we shopped and came home to watch DVDs for the rest of the day -enforced idleness!!!!!!!!
By evening, we heard reports that one village in Steiermark had been practically washed away, and Graz itself was under flooding threat. Many of the smaller tales no doubt not making the news, but even the Army was drafted into help in St Lorenzen, and they were already talking about if it is worthwhile to rebuild. It seems Austria has an emergency fund for such disasters. Poor folks.
Sunday was a bit better and the river was dropping. Dave and I went down to Kreischberg to the local power station on the Mur. All the gates were open, and it was quite uncanny so see a normally flooded stretch now a quarter full. There was a lot of silt, and strangely a strong smell of ozone, quite nostalgic for the sea!
Lets hope its the last of this weather, the air this morning had that wonderful coolness to it. I don’t like the heat, funny when we came here, I expected to be permanently cold!!!!!