Three dead in French floods

Heavy rain and flooding hit southern France at the weekend, seeing hundreds of people evacuated, three killed in flood-related accidents, and 12 regions still on alert on Sunday.

Authorities were called in to assist more than 2,300 people after rivers overran their banks and streets and homes were flooded, with some residents having to be rescued with helicopters.

Local authorities said on Sunday that an elderly couple had died in the town of Bagnols-en-Foret in the south-western Var region from carbon monoxide poisoning while trying to use a motorised pump to empty their flooded basement.

A 51-year-old German homeless man was also found dead Saturday after he was washed away in floodwaters in the southern Herault region.

In Var, one of the worst-hit regions, more than 1,600 people were evacuated or assisted by authorities and about 3,900 homes were without electricity.

In the Alpes-Maritimes region, 700 people had been evacuated since Saturday morning, authorities said.

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South west France on red alert for flooding

Five areas in south west France have been placed on a red weather alert for flooding as storms lash the region.

South west France on red alert for flooding
Storms are moving in to south west France over the Pyrenees. Photo: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP

Météo France has placed five départements in south west France – Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Landes, Hautes-Pyrénées, Haute-Garonne and Ariège – on a red weather alert for heavy rains and flooding.

Extremely heavy rainstorms have hit the area, with a band of storm clouds travelling along the Pyrenees, bringing the risk of avalanches in the mountains and flooding in lowland areas.

The neighbouring département of Pyrénées-Orientale is on orange alert, along with the principality of Andorra. In the north, Aisne is also on orange alert for heavy rain.

Heavy rain is expected to continue throughout Monday, gradually easing off towards the evening, although the flood alerts remain in place until Tuesday.