France and Britain brace for storms after weeks of drought

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Paris,
Aug
18:

France
and
parts
of
the
United
Kingdom
are
gearing
up
for
violent
storms
after
a
summer
that
saw
weeks
of
drought
and
heat
waves.

Fierce
rainstorms
hammered
France
overnight,
flooding
subway
stations
in
Paris
and
causing
traffic
snarls
as
the
French
weather
service
on
Wednesday
warned
of
new
flash
flooding
risks.

France and Britain brace for storms after weeks of drought

“The
storms
are
making
their
way
east…
and
can
be
violent
with
intense
rain
that
in
some
places
could
see
up
to
eight
centimeters
fall
in
a
short
amount
of
time,”
the
Meteo
France
weather
agency
said.

Stranded beluga whale rescued from Seine river in FranceStranded
beluga
whale
rescued
from
Seine
river
in
France

On
Tuesday,
winds
over
100kph
(62mph)
were
reported
at
the
top
of
the
Eiffel
Tower.
Forecasts
warned
of
similar
winds
on
Wednesday
in
the
southeast.

Weather
warnings
issued

Sudden
storms
saw
Paris
and
other
regions
battered
by
hail.

In
the
south
of
France,
rainstorms
flooded
the
Old
Port
of
Marseille
and
the
city’s
main
courthouse
and
led
to
the
closure
of
nearby
beaches.

Alert
levels
were
announced
for
13
departments,
which
included
several
along
the
Mediterranean
coast
and
surrounding
the
southeastern
city
of
Lyon.

Weather
warnings
were
also
issued
for
Normandy
along
the
English
Channel
in
the
northwest,
extending
toward
the
border
with
Belgium.

Authorities
called
on
people
to
postpone
travel
plans
and
to
avoid
waterways.

“Just
30
centimeters
of
water
is
enough
to
sweep
away
a
car,”
the
prefecture
of
the
Var
department
on
the
French
Riviera
said
in
a
statement.

UK, France trade blame over Dover traffic chaosUK,
France
trade
blame
over
Dover
traffic
chaos

The
recent
rainfall
has
offered
some
respite
to
firefighters
battling
France’s
worst
fire
season
in
the
last
decade.

Scattered
wildfires,
however,
continue
to
burn
in
southwest
France,
authorities.

Most
parts
of
Western
Europe
have
experienced
a
season
of
extreme
weather
that
experts
link
to
human-made
climate
change.

London
and
other
parts
of
southern
England
witnessed
flash
flooding
as
torrential
rain
and
thunderstorms
whipped
the
country
that
recorded
its
first
ever
40
degree
Celsius
temperature
last
month.

But
despite
the
downpour,
much
of
England
is
officially
still
in
drought
after
one
of
its
driest
summers.

Source: DW



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