Articles | Volume 23, issue 2
Research article
 | Highlight paper
03 Mar 2023
Research article | Highlight paper |  | 03 Mar 2023

Performance of the flood warning system in Germany in July 2021 – insights from affected residents

Annegret H. Thieken, Philip Bubeck, Anna Heidenreich, Jennifer von Keyserlingk, Lisa Dillenardt, and Antje Otto


Interactive discussion

Status: closed

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2022-244', Martijn Kuller, 11 May 2022
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Annegret Thieken, 10 Sep 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on egusphere-2022-244', Anonymous Referee #2, 15 Jul 2022
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC2', Annegret Thieken, 10 Sep 2022

Peer review completion

AR: Author's response | RR: Referee report | ED: Editor decision | EF: Editorial file upload
ED: Reconsider after major revisions (further review by editor and referees) (19 Sep 2022) by Daniela Molinari
AR by Annegret Thieken on behalf of the Authors (22 Dec 2022)  Author's response   Author's tracked changes   Manuscript 
ED: Referee Nomination & Report Request started (28 Dec 2022) by Daniela Molinari
RR by Anonymous Referee #2 (05 Jan 2023)
RR by Martijn Kuller (16 Jan 2023)
ED: Publish subject to technical corrections (31 Jan 2023) by Daniela Molinari
AR by Annegret Thieken on behalf of the Authors (02 Feb 2023)  Author's response   Manuscript 
Executive editor
This paper examines the warning deficits in conjunction with the major flooding event in Germany of summer 2021. The event caused many fatalities and enormous damage. The warning procedures proved to be insufficient, and after investigations it was decided to install a cell broadcast system in Germany, which is already in place today. The deeper investigations on the warning perceptions and the influencing factors is of major interest to readers beyond the scientific community.
Short summary
In July 2021 intense rainfall caused devastating floods in western Europe with 184 fatalities in the German federal states of North Rhine-Westphalia (NW) and Rhineland-Palatinate (RP), calling their warning system into question. An online survey revealed that 35 % of respondents from NW and 29 % from RP did not receive any warning. Many of those who were warned did not expect severe flooding, nor did they know how to react. The study provides entry points for improving Germany's warning system.
Final-revised paper