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North eastern France on alert as deadly storms return

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North eastern France on alert as deadly storms return
File Photo: AFP
07:56 CEST+02:00
Mother nature has not quite finished with France just yet, with much of the north east on alert for violent storms, the day after a 70-year-old man drowned in his car after flash floods.

As flood waters recede in Paris and Normandy it was the turn of north eastern France on Wednesday to prepare itself for the impact of storms and torrential downpours.

Météo France, the country's weather service, has placed some 21 départements of the north east on Orange alert for storms and heavy rains (see map below) on Wednesday morning.

The storms forecast for the newly named Grand-Est region, Burgundy and Franche-Comté are due to hit at around midday.

Météo France says they will see torrential downpours at a local level and possible showers of hail stones. Up to 60 mm of rainfall is forecast in a short period of time.

It comes after a day violent storms swept through the neighbouring Nord-Pas-de-Calais region and left one elderly man dead.

The 70-year-old drowned in his car near the town of Mondicourt in the Pas-de-Calais département.

Local authorities said the man drove his car down the flooded RN 25 road and was taken by surprise by the level of the rising flood waters.

He was unable to escape the vehicle and subsequently drowned.

On Tuesday firefighters across the region were called out hundreds of times in northern départements like Oise and Nord.

Train services in the region, notably in and out of the city of Lille were badly affected.

On Wednesday the government is expected to officially declare states of "natural disaster" for those areas hit by last week's floods in central France.

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