French Riviera hit by floods, 155 evacuated

2014-01-20 09:19
A police officer checks the fences in western France, as flood season approaches. (David Vincent, AFP)

A police officer checks the fences in western France, as flood season approaches. (David Vincent, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Hyeres - Two people were killed on Sunday and more than 150 had to be airlifted to safety after "historic" floods struck southeastern France, local authorities said.

A third man disappeared while out on his boat and 4 000 homes have been left without power after the inundations in the department of Var, they said.

Local official Laurent Cayrel said one of the victims, a 73-year-old man, died in his basement, while the other was swept away in his car.

"The situation is very worrying, and it's not going to get any better tonight [Sunday]", he said, adding that there had been "record rainfall".

In the town of Hyeres, mayor Jacques Politi spoke of "a historic flood".

Var, which lies on the stretch of Mediterranean coast known as the Riviera popular with tourists, is known for its sunny climate.

But with forecasts of more rain overnight, Cayrel urged "the greatest vigilance".

Staggering

Eight emergency helicopters would be deployed throughout the night, with 500 fire officers and 200 police on duty.

By late Sunday, 155 people had been airlifted from the worst-hit areas and efforts to evacuate residents by boat were continuing.

One local resident told how from her home she saw a huge wave sweep her empty car away before she was evacuated by helicopter with her five-year-old daughter.

"It was really staggering", she said. "We had called the fire brigade who told us to move the furniture upstairs. We had very little time, the house flooded very quickly."

French Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault will travel to the affected area early on Monday, his office said.

Late on Sunday, authorities issued a separate flood alert for the river Rhone, which runs through southeastern France.

In an interview in a local paper on Monday Ayrault said that a natural catastrophe announcement would soon be issued, making it easier for those affected to make insurance claims.

Read more on:    jean-marc ayrault  |  france  |  floods
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

13 summer safety tips

Summer time and the burning is easy. Get some great tips to ensure sunburn doesn't spoil your holiday!

 
 

I love summer.24

Stay in shape this summer
Ultimate fails compilation 2014
This sleeping bulldog is you during the holidays
This man's reaction to his Christmas present is priceless!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off the bestselling books

Save big on the most captivating reads of 2014. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Short term gratification seems like fun at the time; just remember that your boundaries are down right now and there s a tendency...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.