Strong storms kill five in Germany, Poland and Czech Republic

At least five people died in a windstorm that hit central Europe on Sunday, causing widespread power outages and traffic disruptions.

Berlin's fire service has also introduced an emergency situation regime against the backdrop of the storm.

Winds reached more than 60 miles per hour (100 kph) in several parts of the Czech Republic and hit 111 miles per hour (180 kph) at the top of Snezka, the country's highest mountain.

In Germany, the 63-year-old man died at the campsite, which was flooded, another woman died when her boat capsized in the Baltic sea.

A freight ship's moorings were also affected meaning it ran aground in Langeoog. The authorities are keeping a close watch for signs that its 1,800 tonnes of fuel oil might leak.

In Germany, the storms caused flooding in Hamburg, where waters rose up around the city's fishmarket. Rail traffic in most parts of the North of Germany stopped after the fall of the trees on the way.

There were 22 people on board however lifeboat services said all crew members escaped uninjured.

According to the correspondent, the restrictions imposed by Germany's Deutsche Bahn railway company had targeted such German regions as Lower Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein, Hamburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, and Thuringia.

The winds felled trees in the Czech Republic, with one elderly man dying after being hit in the town of Jicin northeast of Prague, and one woman killed by a tree in a wooded area.

The decision left thousands of travellers stranded and cut rail access to cities such as Bremen, Hamburg, Berlin, Hanover and Kiel.

The weather delayed or halted traffic on several railway corridors and slowed road traffic, with a fallen tree blocking one highway just outside of Prague.

Prague Zoo closed because of the winds, but Prague Airport was running without problems, newspaper Lidove Noviny's website reported.

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