People killed after fierce flooding in southern France

epa07943318 An elderly woman is evacuated by French rescue guards and firefighters from a flooded area following heavy rainfalls in Villeneuve-les-Beziers, near Beziers, southern France, 23 October 2019. Six departments in southern France are on Orange alert for storms and floodings. EPA-EFE/GUILLAUME HORCAJUELO

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Three people have died after several days of heavy storms that sent rivers flooding over their banks across southern France, causing “significant damage,” the interior minister said.

Rescue workers have carried out nearly 1,800 operations since Sunday, Christophe Castaner said in a statement, after eight departments in France were placed on high alert for flash floods.

He did not provide details on when or how the deaths occurred, but an interior ministry official said they were in the Herault, Gard and Pyrenees-Orientales departments.

Around 700 homes remain without power in Herault and Gard, and the flooding could halt train services across much of the area until at least November 4, the SNCF train operator said.

“This toll could have been higher,” Transport Minister Elisabeth Borne said while inspecting the damage in Beziers, a city hit particularly hard.

 

Via France 24

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