France on alert as deadly storms continue

Summer storms that killed three people over the weekend are set to continue, with the national weather agency warning for more wild winds and potential flooding on Monday.

France on alert as deadly storms continue
Two people died after their car, above, was washed into a river following heavy rainfalls in Montpellier. Photo: AFP
Météo France, the country's meteorological service, issued orange alert warnings for 14 départements in France on Monday. 
That's the second-highest warning level and asks the public to be “very vigilant”.
The areas on alert are: Alpes-de-Haute-Provence, Hautes-Alpes, Ardèche, Charente-Maritime, Drôme, Gard, Indre, Indre-et-Loire, Loire-Atlantique, Maine-et-Loire, Deux-Sèvres, Vaucluse, Vendée and Vienne (see map below).

(Photo: Météo France)
The agency noted that there will be exceptionally strong winds – up to 100km/hr in some areas – and torrential rainfall.
Rough seas are expected to send huge waves crashing along the Atlantic coast in the west, with the agency noting that there are risks of flooding. 
On the south-eastern side of France, strong winds and thunderstorms are predicted to continue. Météo France forecast that rainfall of up to 15cm could hit in a very short time. 

(Click the link in the tweet above to see more images of the weekend floods in Montpellier)

Torrential rain and subsequent flooding took the lives of three French people over the weekend. An elderly couple died in Montpellier after their car washed away, and a Parisian on holiday in southern France died when his caravan toppled over in the wind.
Rail traffic was also delayed after a mudslide hit the tracks in the Languedoc-Roussillon region of southern France, but trains were running as normal again by Monday morning.
Monday's weather warnings are in place until 8pm, with more information to come in the agency's 4pm bulletin.

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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.