BRUSSELS (Brussels Morning) – The approaching Storm Franklin, a strong blowing wind in Brussels, the Brussels fire brigade holding its breath for the night is what last night looked like. Things are worse on the coast. The Brussels fire brigade shows solidarity and lends a ladder truck to colleagues in Ostend.
“We have sent a lift ladder to Ostend to provide assistance there,” confirms Walter Derieuw of the Brussels fire brigade.
“The Ostend fire brigade had asked for that assistance,” says Derieuw, who emphasises that the Brussels fire brigade has not been weakened by this. “It was a spare ladder, which we keep on hand in case one of our cars breaks down.”
‘Very pleased with the solidarity’
They would like to see that extra ladder truck in Ostend. The RMI has again announced code orange for the coastal region, with gusts of up to 125 kilometres per hour in that area on Sunday evening. It is currently all hands on deck.
“In such exceptionally bad circumstances, we always hope for the solidarity of the relief zones in Flanders and beyond. We are therefore very pleased that our colleagues in Brussels were able to lend a car,” Dries Van der Veken, commander of the Ostend fire brigade, is grateful to his Brussels colleagues.
‘A race against the clock’
“We are of course unlucky that this stormy weather was quite common. Many parts of Flanders have been affected. This made it very difficult to shift resources within the relief zone. The ladder trucks were occupied everywhere, including in the fire zones surrounding us.”
“We are fortunate that our colleagues from Brussels had the opportunity to send a vehicle with a driver. We also staffed the car with local firefighters. In this way we try to get rid of our backlog a bit. We are preparing for what is to come. It’s a race against time, so we could use all the help,” explains Van der Veken.
‘We hold on tight for the night’
The same sound can be heard at the Brussels fire brigade. They said last night, “We are holding out for tonight, because we sporadically still receive calls via the number 1722 or the e-counter. Our waiting list has not yet been eliminated. There are currently more than 200 interventions to be performed.” From Monday, the municipal services will also take cleanup work out of the hands of the fire brigade. “Each service will then roll up its sleeves in its own congregation.”