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Extreme rains flood southern Swedish town

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10:53 CEST+02:00
Extreme rains have been pouring over southern Sweden's Mariannelund since late Saturday evening, flooding homes and undermining roads.

“There have been just enormous amounts of rain. Last night we pumped water out of some 15 buildings, and now the water is coming in from the forests, so this morning a sports hall and several homes have been flooded,” emergency services leader Jörgen Franzén said to the TT news agency on Sunday morning.

“Right now we're putting up barriers to lead the water away and minimize damages,” he continued.

Mariannelund residents were shocked by the amounts of water.

“I've never seen anything like this,” said Monika Lodel, who lives in central Mariannelund, to the Aftonbladet newspaper.

“It was pouring down, I could barely see out of the window. Water came in through our chimney, and I sat there with a rag and didn't dare go to sleep. I kept thinking it would stop, but it didn't,” she said.

Mariannelund, a small town in southern Småland, is best known through Astrid Lindgren's books, as the setting for Emil of Lönneberga.

The roads from Mariannelund to Vimmerby and Hultsfred have been undermined by rain and have been closed.

“It's stopped raining now, but the water is still rising,” said Jörgen Franzén.

According to meteorological institute SMHI it's rained nearly 40 millimetres in the area, and it may be even more locally.

Jönköping's police force has announced through its website that water levels in Silverån by Målilla are over two metres higher than usual, and there is a risk of dams in the area breaking.

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