Barge (in Duisburg): »Every day there is a threat of a lock or a weir collapsing«
Hauke-Christian Dittrich / DPA
The inland boatmen in Germany warn of the deterioration of the waterways.
"The rivers and canals with their more than 700 weirs, locks and lifts, dams and bridges in Germany have been driven to wear and tear for decades," said the Inland Shipping Association (BDB) on Monday together with the Ver.di union.
In a joint position paper, both organizations called on the federal government to provide the Federal Waterways and Shipping Administration (WSV), which is responsible for the maintenance and expansion of rivers and canals, with better staffing and financial resources.
"The current budget of the red-yellow-green federal government is not even enough to stop the loss of substance in the infrastructure," it said.
»The threatening system collapse on the federal waterways with all the ecological and economic consequences must be prevented.«
"Flexible funding of at least" two billion euros is needed.
The decades-long loss of substance must be stopped and structures along the rivers and canals renovated and expanded.
"Every day there is a threat of a lock or a weir collapsing," the organizations warned.