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Flooding costs SFr580 million

Heavy rainfall and melting snow in 1999, which caused some of the worst flooding this century, cost Switzerland SFr580 million.

The environment ministry said the repair bill amounted to the biggest since 1987.

There had not been such extensive flooding – and over such a prolonged period – since 1910, the ministry said on Monday in a review of last year’s floods.

Most of German-speaking Switzerland was affected by the rise in water levels in lakes and rivers. And six of Switzerland’s lakes recorded their highest water levels this century.

Two periods of heavy rainfall in May contributed to the exceptional conditions, the ministry added.

The ministry suggested delaying the filling up of lakes after winters when plenty of snow had fallen.

Meanwhile, water levels are receding after Sunday’s heavy rains. Roads in eastern Switzerland which were closed because of mudslides have now reopened.

swissinfo and agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR