ADD boss defends his actions on the night of the Ahr flood

Mainz (dpa / lrs) – According to his own statements, the President of the Supervisory and Service Directorate (ADD) acted correctly on the night of the flood disaster on the Ahr. During the night, the ADD “only knew about individual events” and had no comprehensive picture of the situation, said ADD President Thomas Linnertz on Friday before the investigative committee of the Rhineland-Palatinate state parliament. The ADD tried to get information about the situation from the various control centers and technical operations management (TEL) on site. “We have to rely on what the technical operations management can provide us with in order to be able to assess a situation well,” said the 46-year-old.

Many questions in the meeting on Friday revolved around the question of whether the ADD, as the state authority, should not have taken over the operations management from the Ahrweiler district on the evening of July 14, 2021. “During the night there were no indications that we would have to take over the command of operations,” said Linnertz. According to the information available at the time, no central defense measures were necessary, and there were also no indications that the TEL in the district town of Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler would not have been able to work. It was only on July 16 that an ADD employee at TEL in Bad Neuenahr-Ahrweiler indicated that the operations management there was overwhelmed. On July 16, in a telephone conversation with Secretary of State for the Interior, Randolf Stich (SPD), it was first considered that the ADD should take over the command of operations.

In his own words, Linnertz only found out about midnight on the evening of the flood disaster from the destroyed houses in the village of Schuld, and also that there were missing and possibly dead people. He only found out the next day that this was actually the case. “We couldn’t have deployed more resources overnight,” he said. The situation was not foreseeable.

© dpa-infocom, dpa:220923-99-875267/4

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