Heavy rain drenches swathes of France

2016-05-31 21:26
People seek shelter under an umbrella as workers cover the court during the French Open. (Thomas Samson, AFP)

People seek shelter under an umbrella as workers cover the court during the French Open. (Thomas Samson, AFP)

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Paris - Heavy rain drenched parts of France on Tuesday, prompting flood warnings near the English Channel, causing more delays at the French Open and soaking tourists in Paris.

Floods or heavy rain were forecast for about a quarter of the country on Tuesday, from Normandy in the west to Burgundy southeast of Paris.

Rescue workers evacuated homes or ordered people to higher floors in the Pas-de-Calais region in the far north as rivers rose more than a meter in some spots, according to the local administration.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve urged people to exercise the "greatest caution." He said that rescue services were deployed a total of 4 500 times overnight and Tuesday morning to help people affected by rising water. No casualties were reported.

The national meteorological service, Meteo France, issued a warning of possible exceptionally dangerous floods in the Loiret region, south of Paris.

It has been raining for several days. During a sudden storm on Saturday, a lightning bolt struck a children's birthday party at a Paris park. Five people remain hospitalised.

All matches at the French Open were cancelled on Monday...the first all-day shutdown in 16 years. Matches got underway on Tuesday, but play was soon disrupted again by rain.


Read more on:    france  |  weather

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