Floods in Central Europe Put Prague on Alert

Five people were killed in the Czech Republic over the weekend


(Reuters)—Volunteers piled up sandbags to keep a swollen river from overwhelming the Czech capital's historic center on Monday after floods across central Europe forced factories to close, drove thousands from their homes and killed at least six people.

Five people were killed at the weekend in the Czech Republic, where the flooding was the worst in a decade, while in Austria one clean-up worker was killed in a mud-slide near Salzburg and another three people were missing.

The flooding, which also affected parts of Germany, Slovakia, Hungary and Poland, sent shares in reinsurers Munich Re and Hannover Re down by about 3.5 percent with markets anticipating big claims from property owners once the waters recede.