Paris suburb calls for ‘natural disaster’ aid after heaviest rainfall in a decade

A town in the southern suburbs of Paris is asking that a state of natural disaster be called after it suffered its heaviest rainfall in a decade.

Paris suburb calls for 'natural disaster' aid after heaviest rainfall in a decade
File photo: aiwendyl/Depositphotos

On Wednesday evening, Draveil's mayor sent a request to the local prefecture for recognition of the city's state of natural disaster, a move which would make more funding and resources available to those affected.

Draveil, 20km outside the French capital, was hit by thunderstorms on Tuesday night which saw a month's worth of rain fall in just half an hour.

In total, 55mm of rain hit the town, causing considerable flooding damage to hundreds residential and public buildings, according to a report in Le Parisien.

Around 50 firefighters responded to more than 300 call-outs in the area, working to secure homes while many residents were away on holiday.

Map showing the position of Draveil.

It's been a summer of unpredictable weather in France, with the country often split by forecasts promising heatwaves for some and storms for others.

The past few weeks have seen France battle blazing wildfires brought on by extreme heat coupled with dry weather and high winds, and suffer through a gloomy July, particularly in the north where some outdoor events and even beaches were closed due to rain, while downpours left Paris Metro stations flooded.

Most of the country experienced significantly less sunlight than usual this July, with more than a 25 percent drop in hours of sunlight in areas including Bordeaux, Limoges, and Nouvelle-Aquitaine.

And thunderstorms at the beginning of August saw several teenagers and British holidaymakers struck by lightning


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.