Public warned as Storm Antonia lashes Germany

Wind gusts exceeding 100 km/h have injured motorists, toppled trees, and disrupted train travel around Germany.

Public warned as Storm Antonia lashes Germany
Hamburg's fish market floods during Storm Antonia. Photo: Daniel Bockwoldt/DPA

Storm Antonia—the third severe storm to hit Germany since Thursday, swept through the country with winds of up to 100 km/h in the southwestern state of Baden-Württemberg, and even recorded hurricane force winds of 149 km/h on the Feldberg mountain peak in the Black Forest.

Two drivers in Lower Saxony were injured when their cars crashed into a tree that Antonia had blown over.

Both drivers had to be taken to nearby hospitals in the Osnabrück district, according to a police spokesperson. The storm also overturned a truck on Schleswig-Holstein’s Fehmarnsund Bridge, closing the roadway to the nearby island in both directions. In the meantime, Antonia also flooded parts of Hamburg’s Altona district.

Antonia also damaged cars and destroyed roofs in North-Rhine Westphalia. Fire crews in Herdecke, just south of Dortmund, reported that a roof of one apartment building flew off and landed on another building, massively damaging it, although no injuries were reported.

200 metres of a bus overhead line in Solingen were also completely ripped out after a tree fell on the line.

German state rail company Deutsche Bahn is also warning travellers to expect both delays and cancellations on Monday after storm damage made more than 6,000 kilometres of rail track impassable.

Long distance trains originating in the northeastern cities of Rostock and Stralsund saw their services to both Hamburg and Berlin cancelled.

Further cancellations were seen on routes between Emden and Cologne and operations between Siegen and Dortmund. Regional rail service in North-Rhine Westphalia was halted as a precautionary measure on Sunday evening, but are set to resume normal operations Monday.

Replacement bus services on rail lines operated by Metronom in Lower Saxony, Hamburg, and Bremen are expected to be in place until Monday afternoon, with rail restrictions in Thuringia, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, Rhineland-Palatinate, and Saarland expected to last through much of Monday.

Following disrupted train services, some lessons in the Lower Franconian district of Miltenberg were cancelled for Monday.

Antonia is the third severe storm to hit Germany since Thursday and some damage still remains from previous storms Ylenia and Zeynep.

At least six people died in those two storms, with insurance claims expected to be in the billions.

Meteorologists with the German Weather Service (DWD) say high winds will remain an issue in Germany this week, but will be weaker.


Hurricane – (der) Orkan  

Storm – (der) Sturm 

Storm damage – (die) Unwetterschäden

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Forecasters warn public of falling trees as Germany braces for next storm

After two hurricane-force storms battered Germany within a week, a third gale is set to make landfall on Sunday. The German Weather Service (DWD) have said that damaged trees pose a real danger.

Forecasters warn public of falling trees as Germany braces for next storm

The storm front known as Antonia is set to follow hot on the heels on Zeynep, with winds approaching hurricane force to pummel the north of the country on Sunday evening.

While the storm isn’t expected to be as intense as the previous two, the DWD cautioned on Sunday that it will hit trees that have been left damaged by the winds of the past week.

“Trees already affected by previous storms and standing in sometimes severely sodden soils can easily topple in the process,” warned DWD weatherman Adrian Leyser.

Zeynep has been confirmed as the most severe storm of the past 15 years. It led to at least three deaths and caused an estimated 900 million euros of damage.

The storm front Ylenia, which hit Germany on Thursday, also cause around half a billion euros in damages, according to the consultancy firm Meyerthole Siems Kohlruss.

Deutsche Bahn has told travellers to expect train delays well into Monday as the company works on clearing fallen trees and repairing damage over some 1,000 kilometres of its rail network.

“The forecast for Sunday and also Monday remains difficult,” said Deutsche Bahn spokesman Achim Stauß.