The number of people who are missing as a result of the deadly floods that ravaged many regions in Belgium last week increased to 116 again on Tuesday after being reduced to 70.
At the start of Monday’s Consultative Committee press conference, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced that some 50 people who were still presumed missing were found, bringing the tally of missing people down to 70, however, this number has increased once again.
The news was confirmed by the office of Home Affairs Minister Annelies Verlinden and the crisis centre, following warnings of the previous days that the number of people missing could fluctuate in the coming days.
Meanwhile, the death toll still stands at 31 people, of whom 29 have been identified in the meantime, Yves Stevens, the spokesperson of the crisis centre, said.
One of those identified bodies was that of the 15-year-old girl who went missing last Wednesday after ending up in the Ourthe, and who was found by a farmer on Saturday in Hampteau, in the province of Luxembourg, three kilometres from where she had been taken by the current.
In Liège, one of the most affected regions, the search for missing people is ongoing, however, the hope of finding more people is diminishing by the hour.
Meanwhile, the platform S.O.S. Overstromingen Inondations, which offers help to victims of flooding, offers from people who are offering their services and items are continuously coming in, and more than 3,000 offers of help have already been sent in the previous days.
The various people, mainly coming from Flanders and Brussels, which were in part less affected by the flooding, are offering clothing, toys and furniture on the platform, as well as their help to tidy houses, clear debris and transport goods.
Large supermarket chains have joined the efforts to help the victims of the flooding, with various local initiatives being launched to send food and water, according to reports from Belga news agency.
Others donated money to the Red Cross aid organisation, including Aldi and Delhaize, which donated €1 million and sent 10,000 food parcels and 22,000 litres of water to the affected areas.
Colruyt focused on providing logistical support by filling trucks with canned goods and personal hygiene products such as nappies, soap and toothbrushes.
The provinces of Liège, Namur and Luxembourg also received assistance from six agents from Luxembourg, 100 from Austria, 80 from the Netherlands, 70 from France and 28 from Italy.