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“This roar makes us sick”

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Von: Christian Reinartz

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Pointing to the origin of the deep hum, the water pump in Fechenheim: Ursula and Dittmar Münk.
Pointing to the origin of the deep hum, the water pump in Fechenheim: Ursula and Dittmar Münk. © Reinartz

A couple from Bürgel suffers from the almost constant noise of a water pump on the Fechenheimer Ufer. There, a farmer promotes water from the Main. Now the city is taking action.

Offenbach – On the Bürgeler Mainufer, a dull roar is currently driving the residents crazy. The cause of the noise is a huge water pump on the other side of the Main. Apparently, a farmer takes water from the Main to irrigate his fields in Fechenheim – and uses it to continuously sonicate the people of Offenbach on the other bank. “It’s this constant tone that wears you down,” complains resident Dittmar Münk, pointing to the yellow machine far away on the other side. His wife Ursula is no longer able to either. “It’s been like this for over three weeks now,” she reports. “Often the machine even runs at night.” According to the Münks, the entire neighborhood is now annoyed by the constant noise from the pump.

During an on-site visit on the Uferstraße, the pump is initially at a standstill. The Münks seem a bit desperate, worried that you won’t believe them. But the farmer drives up with his car on the other side of the Main, as if ordered, pours petrol from canisters, checks the intake hose hanging in the Main and starts the machine. After that there can be no doubt:

Offenbach: “If we want to sleep in the evening, we hear a deep, unpleasant sound all the time.

The roar is incredibly loud, deep and piercing, like standing next to a truck with the engine running. “And that’s almost even worse in the apartment,” says Dittmar Münk. As a filmmaker for Hessischer Rundfunk, he himself has many years of experience with audio engineering. He explains: “Deep sound waves know no walls. When we want to sleep at night, we hear a deep, unpleasant sound all the time. This roar makes us sick.” Apart from the noise of the pump, the Münks are also critical of the water extraction from the Main. “We have water shortages everywhere because of the heat and then a farmer simply takes water from the Main on a large scale,” says Dittmar Münk. “It’s definitely not okay.”

The pump is switched on by the farmer.
The pump is switched on by the farmer. © Reinartz, Christian

The city of Frankfurt is aware of the process. “As far as we know, there is a water law permit for the withdrawal of water from the Main,” says Eckhard Krumpholz from the responsible environmental agency of the city of Frankfurt. Ultimately, however, the Darmstadt Regional Council, as the upper water authority, is responsible for this extraction, which is classified as commercial. The city can therefore not provide any information on the water law situation, such as what amount and at what times water may be withdrawn.

Nevertheless, Münks’ complaint could now apparently have consequences for the farmer, because the Frankfurt environmental agency is also the immission control authority and is therefore responsible for such noise. Eckhard Krumpholz: “Employees from the environmental agency were already on site and are currently determining whether noise limits are being exceeded.” Then, shortly before the editorial deadline, the surprise: According to Dittmar Münk, the pump was picked up yesterday afternoon. (Christian Reinartz)

An era ended in Offenbach with the demolition of a boxing club hall.

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