(archive picture 15 July)

Met Office issues orange alert for heavy rain this weekend: "No reason to panic, but stay vigilant"

The Met Office has sent a new warning for heavy rain this weekend. The amber alert applies mostly to eastern Belgium, though rainfall can be heavy in western provinces as well. "We have to remain vigilant, but we shouldn't expect the worst either: the showers will be mostly local." 

A map compiled by the Met Office gives the amber colour to the centre and eastern parts of Belgium. West and East Flanders and Hainaut province received a yellow warning. "Though local showers can be equally heavy there as well", the Met Office underlines. The warning applies from 2 p.m. tomorrow to 3 o'clock in the following night. 

There is one big difference with last week's floods: the heavy rainfall will be local, there will be a big variation in location and intensity. "We should all remain vigilant", says the VRT's weather presenter Frank Deboosere. 

Patrick Willems, a professor Hydraulic Engineering at KU Leuven, agrees: "Last week, we had a lot of precipitation in a very large area. This time is will be local. You may expect typical problems like sewage systems that can't cope, but it will be a local thing. I understand that people may be concerned, but you shouldn't expect the worst. Last week's rainfall was really exceptional." 

The area bordering the River Demer (mainly in Flemish Brabant) is mostly at risk for new floods as water levels in the river are still high. 

Experts ask members of the public and local authorities to check whether water pipes, drain systems or sewage systems haven't been  blocked by last week's rainfall. 

Top stories