This could be exceptionally fun

A Belgian judge has opened an investigation for possible manslaughter over floods there that claimed 38 lives, the prosecutors office in the city of Liege announced.

The investigating magistrate has the task of identifying who might be responsible for “involuntary homicide by lack of foresight or precaution” the prosecutors office said in a statement on Wednesday.

There’re a lot of if’s to string together here as I know very little about this. Possibly some would like to inform me?

So, we know that the enviros have managed, at EU level, to curtail dredging and flood maintenance. Those vital wetlands must be allowed to regenerate. This was the explanation for those Somerset Levels problems.

There are large areas of Northern Europe where doing this will leads to substantial flooding. We’ve just had substantial flooding in areas of Northern Europe.

So, now, magistrates investigation into why the floods. Will that end up being fingered as part of the cause?

Nope, dunno, but would be fun…..

10 thoughts on “This could be exceptionally fun”

  1. Do remember they finally persecuted—–oops prosecuted the engineers who released water from the Wivenhoe Dam and caused a flood after the long drought.

    I thought they should have prosecuted the Greenies who’d stopped the building of the Wolffdene and Traveston Dams and caused the water shortage in SE Qld in the first place. But of course they were in power.

  2. When I was a lad we used to get a few tidal floods a year. I was struck by the coincidence that a row of cottages near us was always just above the point that the floods reached.

    Moreover, the buildings near the harbour – warehouses, mainly – were elevated. The loading bays would flood, of course, but not the storage floors. Further coincidence, no doubt.

    I assume that that river floods are a more testing problem but that’s partly a problem of government, isn’t it?

    P.S. I can exclusively reveal that summer tidal floods provide unadulterated joy for wee boys. Or at least for wee boys who know better than to swim, row, or sail on the ebb.

  3. Bloke in North Dorset

    There is a precedent, of sorts:

    Six Italian scientists and a government official have been sentenced to six years in prison over statements they made prior to a 2009 earthquake that killed 309 in the town of L’Aquila.

    A year-long trial came to a close today (Oct. 22) with the verdict, which alarmed earth scientists worldwide.

    “I hope the Italians realize how backwards they are in this L’Aquila trial and its verdict,” Erik Klemetti, an assistant professor of geosciences at Denison University in Ohio, wrote on Twitter, adding that the verdict was a “terrible precedent.”

    According to prosecutors, the scientists and official downplayed the risks of a large quake in L’Aquila, Italy, after a series of tremors shook the city in early 2009. On April 6, 2009, a magnitude-6.3 quake hit, killing 309 people. L’Aquila’s medieval architecture led to numerous building collapses during the quake. [See Photos of L’Aquila Earthquake Destruction]

  4. “lessons have been learned” and all that.

    What I do know is that here in clogland another 126 km of flood measures have been announced, that they are mostly in the places that have been hardest hit, and that those places are almost traditionally the battlefields of the greenies, NIMBYs, and Historical Importance nutters.
    Who are already gearing up the Procedures, Lawyers and Lawsuits to delay/derail the process while the mud is not even cleaned from the street, a couple 100 families are still homeless, etc..

    Also: Pointing out this whole flooding was extreme in the scale, but it happens most every year somewhere in those river valleys locally, and once every 5-10 years serious enough to flatten a place or two, and has been so since time immemorial is useless.

    It’s Climate Change!! etc…
    Building whole neighbourhoods in the floodplain without adequate (flash)flood defenses “because they ruin the view/property value” has nothing to do with it.
    Nor does not strengthening the post-roman/medieval river boundaries in the picturesque tourist towns “because it hurts trade/tourism”. Or not replacing old bridges with modern varieties that do not get clogged by three sticks and a wad of sod and act as a dam “because of historical value”.
    Nor… Well…. you get the picture..

  5. Grikath

    But surely those cloggable bridges were constructed or paid for or smiled upon by people who knew somebody who’d once bought something from a shop owned by a family one of whose scions had once bought or sold or met a slave?

    So it should be pretty easy to fix, these days…

  6. Investigations of this sort tend to go one of two ways. The first is that from the start it’s only interested in finding an expendable low-level functionary who can be made the scapegoat. The second is that the investigators follow the evidence until it points to failures in policy at a high level, at which point they will be very forcibly reminded that their job is to find an expendable low-level functionary who can be made the scapegoat and that there will be severe consequences to their own careers if they fail to do so.

  7. Surreptitious Evil

    During one of the bouts of heavy rain last year, someone on one of the anti-social media apps posted a picture of a (rather well) flooded field somewhere in Englandshire. Well caught, at the edge of the image was a builder’s sign proclaiming planning permission for 250 new homes.

  8. In California the wildfires are far worse than they should be because the nature lovers have stopped clearing out undergrowth (I think the Aussies have a wee bit of this too). The capacity to walk right into an obvious disaster (repeatedly) does still surprise.

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