Heatwave: Paris and northern France on alert as temperatures rise

The greater Paris region of Île-de-France and the far north of the country were on official heatwave warning on Wednesday as temperatures soar around the country.

Heatwave: Paris and northern France on alert as temperatures rise
Photo: AFP
Nine departments in the greater Paris region of Ile-de-France and the north have been placed on orange alert — the second highest warning — for heatwaves by France's national weather agency Meteo France.
The departments affected were all those in the greater Paris region which are Paris, Essonne, Hauts-de-Seine, Seine-Saint-Denis, Seine-et-Marne, Val-de-Marne, Val-d'Oise and Yvelines as well as the Nord department in the north of the country.
“On Wednesday afternoon the temperatures will reach between 32C and 34C,” said Météo France which warned that temperatures would rise throughout the week.
As a result of the heatwave warnings the public are advised to spend at least three hours per day in a cool area (if you can find one) drink water regularly even when you are not thirsty and avoid going outside when the sun is at its hottest.
People in these areas are advised to remain vigilant due to the risk of dangerous weather. 
Weather forecast: What's on the horizon for France this summer?
Photo: AFP
The warnings were put in place at 4 pm on Tuesday and are expected to remain in place until at least Thursday morning although with temperatures predicted to continue rising over the next few days, it's likely the warnings will be extended. 
The mercury is expected to peak at 35C on Friday in the areas concerned. 
In order to be considered an official heatwave (“canicule” in French), there must be three consecutive days of consistently very high temperatures throughout the day and night. 
The temperatures constituting a heatwave vary according to region and in Paris the threshold is set at 31C during the day and 21C at night while in the north, the threshold is 32C during the day and 15C at night. 
The mercury could rise to 35C in northern France and hit 40C in the Rhône Valley. 
But if you'll be in these areas over the next few days, there's no need to worry too much because it is expected that temperatures will drop to a more comfortable level on Saturday.

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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.