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Storm warnings issued as France counts the cost of heatwave

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Storm warnings issued as France counts the cost of heatwave
Firefighters survery the damage in Gard. Photo AFP
11:06 CEST+02:00
As temperatures start to drop to more usual summer levels, France has begun counting the cost of a heatwave that left several people dead and large areas of southern France destroyed by fire.

In the Gard département in southern France, 630 hectares have been left devastated after huge brushfires swept through the parched region.

A total of 550 firefighters spent Saturday battling the flames, which destroyed 11 houses and left three people slightly injured.


Over the weekend at least 10 people died in drowning incidents, while two people were reported to have died on Friday while working outside in the intense heat.

A child was seriously injured north of Paris on Thursday after being catapulted into the air by water gushing from an open fire hydrant and then crashing to the ground.

On Friday 13 départements in the south east of the country remained on orange alert for the heatwave while in the rest of the country temperatures cooled to  a seasonal norm.

Storm warnings for the east of the country. Map Météo France

Ain, Alpes-Maritimes, Ardèche, Bouches-du-Rhône, Drôme, Gard, Hérault, Isère, Rhône, Savoie, Haute-Savoie, Var and Vaucluse remain on orange alert, the second highest level, for the heatwave. 

However there are also warnings out of storms on Monday and several areas in the east of the country have been put on alert for possible hail, as well as thunder and lightning.

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