Yellow alert issued as heavy rain sweeps across Belgium

Yellow alert issued as heavy rain sweeps across Belgium
Heavy rain in Brussels. Credit: The Brussels Times/ Lauren Walker

Heavy rainfall is expected from Monday afternoon, especially in the south of Belgium, resulting in a yellow alert being issued until early Tuesday night.

A lot of rain is expected south of the rivers Sambre and Meuse, which were particularly badly affected by the deadly floods in July 2021, the Royal Meteorological Institute (KMI) warned on Monday.

On Sunday evening, the KMI issued a yellow alert (less serious than the orange and red alerts) for heavy rainfall on Monday and Tuesday. It signals a risk of water damage and possible disruption to local traffic.

The tweet reads: “Warning for rain from 03/01 12h until 05/01 01h: From Monday afternoon until Wednesday night there will be a lot of rain, especially south of Sambre and Meuse.”

In Brussels and Wallonia especially, torrential rain started falling on Sunday night and the fire brigade was called out to certain areas for flooding, mainly on public roads. Local flooding could occur over the coming days.

On Sunday evening, high winds caused significant damage to roofs in the province of Limburg and trees were blown down.

On Monday afternoon and throughout the night, around 10-30 mm is expected to fall in certain regions, with up to 40 mm expected very locally. Over the next 48 hours, until the early morning on Wednesday, 30-50 mm is expected to fall, and very locally 60 to 80 mm.

But weather reporter Bram Verbruggen told VRT News that the approaching rain zone will pass over Belgium quickly, unlike in July when heavy rain fell for a sustained period leading to deadly floods.

Drier but colder

From Wednesday, the rain is expected to ease off in most parts of the country, but this will be replaced by colder weather, from -2°C in the High Fens in the Ardennes to the freezing point in the centre of Belgium. There will also be an increased risk of ice patches on the roads, especially in the southeast of the country.

Meanwhile, closer to the coast, where temperatures will reach a maximum of between 6 and 7°C, heavy winds are expected towards the second half of this week, with peaks expected to reach up to 60 km/h.

On Friday, clearer skies and showers will appear interchangeably, and in some regions, these will turn into wintry showers, which could continue until Saturday.

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