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02 Dec 2019 | 01:48 AM UTC

France: Red weather warnings in two departments in southwest France December 2

Meteo France issues red weather warnings in two departments in southwest France on December 2, five fatalities reported; heavy rain, flooding, and associated disruptions expected



The French meteorology agency issued red weather warnings (the highest on a four-tier scale) for two southeastern departments until 16:00 (local time) on Monday, December 2. The agency forecasts heavy rainfall of between 12-15 cm (5-6 in) and flooding in the Var and Alpes-Maritimes departments. An orange weather warning (the second highest on a four-tier scale) is in place until 16:00 on Monday for the Vaucluse department, in anticipation of flooding. 

Representatives of the Interior Ministry confirmed the deaths of three emergency workers at around 01:30 on Monday due to a helicopter crash. The individuals were carrying out a rescue mission near Le Rove (Bouches-du-Rhône) when their helicopter lost radio and and radar contact. Ministry officials also reported the deaths of two other individuals who were swept away by the rains on Sunday, December 1.

Related transportation disruptions, hazardous driving conditions, and power outages are possible over the coming hours. 


Individuals in the affected areas are advised to consult local sources to keep abreast of weather alerts, confirm travel reservations, anticipate transportation disruptions, and adhere to instructions issued by the local authorities. Avoid walking or driving through floodwaters; 15 cm (6 in) of running water is enough to knock over an adult.