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WEATHER

Storm alerts in place for south west and north

Much of south west France and parts of Normandy in the north of the country remained on storm alert on Monday with hailstorms and heavy rain expected to batter the region until Tuesday night.

Storm alerts in place for south west and north
File photo: Philippe Huguen/AFP

The south west of France remained on alert on Monday afternoon with storm warnings in place over much of the region. Five departments in the north and west of France including Calvados in Normandy were also placed on alert as the country's weather service Météo France said the tempests were heading that way.

In all sixteen departments (11 in the south west) were placed on Orange alert, due to the storms.

In a statement put out on Monday afternoon Météo France said "the storms would be accompanied by showers of hail stones, downpours and lightning". Up to 100mm of rainfall is forecast for parts of the Pyrénées region of the south west.

Météo France said there was a severe risk of flooding with the warm temperatures bringing about rapid snow melt at higher altitude.

Earlier on Monday fork lightning had lit up the dark skies above Paris as the region on storm alert.

In all, 19 departments in the Ile De France region and south-western France were put on Orange alert for storms, with winds of up to 80kmh expected as well as hail showers.

In a statement Météo France said the storms will be brief but “very violent locally with a risk of gales and hail stones”.

Météo France say torrential downpours could cause buildings and cellars to flood.

Earlier on Monday hail storms also hit the town of Tours to the South West of Paris where hail stones, some the size of eggs, were reported to have caused damage. The storms left around 13,000 households without power in the region.

This image of a hailstone "the size of a ping-pong ball" was taken in Fontenay Le Comte, western France at 4.30 am on Monday.

French daily Le Parisien reported that fire fighters were called out around 200 times as trees were uprooted, basements were flooded and roofs left damaged in the storms.

This image, captured in the 19th arrondissement of the capital, shows some of the heavy cloud cover Parisians witnessed during the storms.

At one point on Monday morning, the skies above Paris resembled a winter's evening, rather than a summer morning, as shown in this picture, also taken in the 19th arrondissement of the capital.

This video, uploaded to Youtube during mid-morning on Monday, shows a spectacular hail storm at Chelles, in the suburbs of Paris.

Send us your pictures of the storm to [email protected]

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WEATHER

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. 

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