In homeopathy, there is a principle that like helps like. The very substance that makes a person sick can therefore be used in attenuated form to cure him or her. It almost seems as if the inventors of a new flood protection system had taken this principle as a model, because they fight floods with water. The system was presented for the first time in germany on saturday.
Idea came in the desert
Not entirely uninvolved in this idea is marktbreit's mayor erich hegwein (CSU). "I was once on vacation in the desert", he says with a laugh, "the camels were treaded with water from coarse sacks". Creative people sometimes think around the corner. So also erich hegwein. "At the time, I was already thinking about using something like this for flood protection, but everyone told me that it would only work with sandbags". So he first ordered some modules of a trough system, in which a special bag is opened like a folding chair and then filled with sand via a front loader or a concrete mixer. A cube filled in this way then nestles against a house wall or a neighboring cube that has already been erected and largely seals itself off. The problem was that the municipality had to buy the sand beforehand and dispose of it after the floods. In addition, the cost for the firefighters, who are usually the fire department, is relatively high.
Erich hegwein had been in contact with flexibox container gmbh and its managing directors, karl and christian orth, for a long time. They already had corresponding filling systems on the market. They implemented the idea of the mayor of marktbreit. 50 centimeters wide, one meter high and weighing one ton are the so-called water-filled big bags, two of which are inserted into a kind of sleeve, the "shoe". The shoes are then interlocked with velcro straps and covered with a rough pvc tarpaulin on the high-water side. In no time at all, they build a stable wall that can be dismantled just as quickly.
"One meter of these water cubes costs 80 to 100 euros", explains christian orth. "This makes us about a third cheaper than the competition". They still work with hose systems "but they are very expensive", adds the flexibox managing director. "When floating debris damages the eaves, a dam breaks at a depth of about 100 meters and the water runs into the city".
Flood of the century
Water in the town had marktbreit massively in 1970. Three pumps were permanently installed as a result. In the creek alley was raised a protective wall against the water. "To seal off the whole town with a flood wall would be madness," he says with a laugh, explained the 2. Mayor, herbert biebelriether (). "We want to be open to visitors, not closed to them." The trough system, which is already available, sufficiently seals the city in the deepest parts over a length of 150 meters. It was already used against the floods of 2003 and 2007. "For a flood of the century like the one in 1970 we have to rinse", said mayor hegwein. This rushing up then happens with the water-filled big-bags. But the first big bags are already being ordered to protect house entrances in case of emergency. Even the best flood wall can't help against the rise in groundwater levels.
All towns and communities along the river main were invited by the district office to present the flood protection system. Surprisingly, the invitation met with a very poor response. Only two mayors from the neighborhood were interested in the presentation of the system. Apparently no floods are expected on the main river in the near future.