First there was rolling and rumbling, then the earth, trees and stones slid away: After a landslide in Siegen in North Rhine-Westphalia, 22 residents of an endangered apartment building were brought to safety early on Saturday morning. According to the police and fire department, no one was injured. It was initially unclear why the landslide occurred in the Leimbachtal.
Residents were also initially evacuated from two other houses, but they were able to quickly return to their apartments due to the safe statics of the houses. There was minor damage to one car.
The front area of the long apartment building was only about one and a half meters from the demolition edge, as the fire brigade's operations manager, Thomas Adamek, told the German Press Agency. "This is critical."
Residents in the rear were allowed to return to their homes after a few hours, while hotel rooms were provided for about a dozen residents in the front. After an assessment of the situation by geologists, they should still be allowed to go to their homes to get the most necessary things.
Further slips cannot be ruled out
Emergency services and geologists set measuring points on the steep slope. It cannot be ruled out that further slips could occur, said the fire brigade's operations manager. In the morning, small pieces of the slope were still slipping. Slope stabilization work is planned for Monday. It is unclear when people can return to their homes.
The residents of the house had alerted the fire brigade early in the morning after hearing "loud rolling and rumbling," said operations manager Adamek. "Like a little earthquake." The slope had slipped in a funnel shape at a height of about ten meters and a width of 30 meters. That is "a very nice piece of earth," said Adamek.