Belgium: flooding closes network

gysev

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Since yesterday (14/07), exceptional rainfall has caused immense flooding in eastern and southern Belgium. During the afternoon, mudslides and flooding closed followong lines:
- L3 Liège - Hergenrath HSL
- L24 Glons - Montzen - Aachen West (freight line)
- L37 Liège - Aachen
- L40 Liège - Visé - Maastricht
- L42 Rivage - Gouvy (- Luxemburg)
- L43 Liège - Rivage - Marloie
- L44 Pepinster - Spa
- L166 between Dinant and Gendron-Celles

Today (15/07) the situation became much worse. This morning EMU 08501 derailed near Jemelle because the track was washed away. Luckely, there were no injuries. During the day these lines also had to be closed:
- L162 Namur - Arlon (flooding + the derailment)
- L125 Namur - Liège
- L130 Namur - Charleroi
- L139 Leuven - Ottignies
- L161 between Ottignies and Namur
- L140 Charleroi - Ottignies
- L124 between Nivelles and Braine L'Alleaud

This means that the important railway junction at Namur has become inaccessible by rail and all traffic to Germany and Luxemburg is interrupted.

Latest news is that flooding threathens L96 (Brussels - Mons) at Hennuyères and Soignies.
 
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MarcVD

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Lines 37 and 162 are expected to need at least two full weeks of work to be repaired.
Line 125, 130, 166, and 40 could resume traffic in a matter of days.
Lines 42, 43, will need about a week
Line 24 expected to be back tomorrow.
LGV 3 is, as far as I know, not flooded but isolated, as Liège station has been evacuated in preparation of the expected Meuse River flooding in Liège. Trains from Brussels are limited to Ans.
Line 124 is back in business already.
For the others, damage assessment is still ongoing.
Line 37 is threatened by a possible much longer closure as one viaduct on the line is considered unstable...
Also, there are lots of sidings occupied by freight trains that can't leave the country. Trafic resumption on line 24 might partly cure that tomorrow but what is the state of the lines further down in Germany ? They seem to be hit as badly as us...
 
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Beebman

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Trafic resumption on line 24 might partly cure that tomorrow but what is the state of the lines further down in Germany ? They seem to be hit as badly as us...
The second part of this article has a list of line closures in Nordrhein Westfalen:
https://www.waz.de/staedte/velbert/...d-bahnstrecken-sind-gesperrt-id232786909.html

It also has an aerial photo of a 3-car DMU (probably a 644) stuck in floodwater at a place called Kordel on the Eifelbahn between Köln and Trier.

Belgian TV channel RTBF has posted a photo of a derailed SNCB AM08 unit on damaged track near Rochefort:
https://ds1.static.rtbf.be/article/...508a60aa3bf9510ea6acb021c94b48-1626434636.jpg

6a508a60aa3bf9510ea6acb021c94b48-1626434636.jpg
 
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MarcVD

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Today we have a better view on the expected service re-openings :

Liège Guillemins re-opened today, for transiting trains, without stopping, in the morning, and with full passenger operation this afternoon.

L24 Glons Montzen came back this morning and Montzen Aachen West this afternoon. So we have a solution for freight trains to Germany, provided that DB can accept them.

We have also a solution for trains to Welkenraedt and Eupen, and for ICE/Thalys trains to Koln.

Next Monday the following lines will resume :

Charleroi Namur Liege 130 125
Beauraing Bertrix 166
Charleroi Ottignies 140
Fleurus Auvelais 147 (freight only)
Namur Dinant 154
Trois Ponts Gouvy 42
Dolhain Welkenraedt 37
Poix Saint Hubert Libramont 162
Gembloux Namur 161

Other lines will re-open later, the longest delay being for line Liège Verviers which is expected for end of August at earliest. This line mostly follows the Vesdre River which concentrates most of the damages caused by the flooding.
 
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Quakkerillo

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E6bRTC2WQAAsRvw[1].png

Here's an image of the currently closed routes, and the expected reopening dates.
The NB reads:
"For the lines between Charleroi and Namur, and Charleroi - Ottignies, actual date is to be confirmed after the water has completely receded"
 

43096

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View attachment 99803

Here's an image of the currently closed routes, and the expected reopening dates.
The NB reads:
"For the lines between Charleroi and Namur, and Charleroi - Ottignies, actual date is to be confirmed after the water has completely receded"
One to note, the Belgian Grand Prix takes place at Spa on 29 August, presumably they'd like the line open before then if at all possible, assuming the race goes ahead - there appears to be a damage in the area around the circuit.
 

Beebman

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Some new flooding tonight in Dinant to the south of Namur, part of this video from RTBF TV shows the railway line there under floodwater:

https://www.rtbf.be/auvio/detail_inondations-a-dinant-24-07-2021?id=2794296&jwsource=cl

EDIT: photo of flooding and cars piled up on the track in Dinant at 22:00 local time this evening from RTL TV:

 
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gysev

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Belgium
That will take some clearing up

In fact, the Namur - Dinant line reopened this morning although the Dinant - Beauraing section of the line to Bertrix is still closed.

Some other segments are open again:

- Liège - Angleur and Welkenraedt - Pepinster of the partly destroyed Liège - Welkenraedt line
- Marloie - Bomal of the Liège - Marloie line
- Gouvy - Trois-Ponts of the (Liège -) Rivage - Luxembourg line
 

Bikeman78

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Some new flooding tonight in Dinant to the south of Namur, part of this video from RTBF TV shows the railway line there under floodwater:

https://www.rtbf.be/auvio/detail_inondations-a-dinant-24-07-2021?id=2794296&jwsource=cl

EDIT: photo of flooding and cars piled up on the track in Dinant at 22:00 local time this evening from RTL TV:

I've seen the video and studied the area on Google maps. It's not immediately obvious where all the water has come from. It appears to be surface water from the hill that has completely overwhelmed the drains.
 

gysev

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Indeed, the water came from the hills and in a few seconds a flash flood was on its way to Dinant. This video clearly shows how fast things became a disaster:

 

Bikeman78

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Doesn't seem to be time-lapse - maybe x2 but not more.
The flood footage cuts off after 2:40. I think what philthetube means is how long did it continue after that? I used to live at a low point where the road flooded during heavy rain. Some houses next to mine did occasionally flood. I used to think I'd be okay but if something on that scale had happened I'd have been stuffed. The houses are officially semi detached but they are linked by the utility rooms that run down the side so there is nowhere for flood water to go other than through the houses.
 

MarcVD

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There are 2 x 400 m of track and one switch to relay, plus the level crossing to rebuild entirely from scratch. For the moment, trains can come from the North into Dinant but only using track 3, as the signalling is out of service for tracks 1 and 2. Everything besides the catenary has been washed out. Trains will run again as of August 16th, the level crossing will remain closed for a few more weeks.

Pictures of the damage caused by the flood on the line Gembloux - Ottignies (part of Brussels - Luxembourg)


Due to the level of damages, some additional délais have been announced : Liège to Germany will only re-open midi September, and the line to Spa in october. There are two bridges to rebuild.
 
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