Authorities in 43 French départements declare state of natural disaster

Authorities in 43 French départements declare state of natural disaster
Flooding and torrential rain hit south west France in October. Photo: AFP PHOTO/SECURITE CIVILE/SDIS34
Almost half of French départements have declared a state of natural disaster following devastating flooding that hit the south and west of the country.

A total of 43 of the country's 96 départements have declared a state of catastrophe naturelle (natural disaster) covering 180 communes.

The majority of the areas affected have been hit by flooding, but some places are still feeling the effects of the months-long drought over the summer, which caused structural damage to many buildings.

The state of natural disaster, published in the Journal officiel, is a legal declaration that releases state aid, and also makes the process of claiming on insurance easier.

The places that have the declaration in place are; Ain, Aisne, Allier, Haute-Alpes, Aube, Aude, Aveyron, Bouches-du-Rhone, Calvados, Charente-Maritime, Corrèze, Hate-Corse, Eure-et-Loir, Haute-Garonne, Hérault, Indre, Isère, Jura, Loir-et-Cher, Loire, Haute-Loire, Loiret, Lot, Manche, Meurthe-et-Moselle, Meuse, Moselle, Nièvre, Pas-de-Calais, Puy-et-Dôme, Haute-Saône, Saône-et-Loire, Haute-Savoie, Seine-et-Marne, Yvelines, Var, Vaucluse, Vendée, Yonne, Territoire de Belfort, Essonne, Val-de-Marne and Val-d'Oise.

Anyone living in those areas who has suffered damage to their property due to floods or drought can benefit from a faster insurance claims process, as well as possible being eligible for state funds.

READ ALSO What does a state of 'natural disaster' mean in France?

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