Heavy Rainfall Forces Popular Tourist Destinations In France To Be Evacuated


Heavy rains have caused flash flooding at several campsites in a region of Southern France that is popular with British tourists. More than 1600 men, women, and children have been evacuated from the campsites.

The popular sites of Drome, Ardeche, and Gard are destinations that many holiday vacationers flock to each summer. The flooding has destroyed tents at the site and filled the roads to and from the campsites with water.

At one campsite in Gard, Saint-Julien-de-Peyrolas, a seventy-year-old man that was at the campsite helping to supervise the children is feared to have been swept away by flood waters.

Approximately 120 children were among the 750 people that had to be evacuated by emergency teams from the Gard region.

Oxford resident Rachel Buchanan\an endured a terrifying drive through flood waters that rushed through a nearby campsite in the region of Ardeche. Buchanan says she awoke to devastating rains that had already brought with them about a foot of water. She also said that the water level and speed of the river was something she had never witnessed before.

Buchanan offered a more detailed picture of the terror she experienced along with her family when she said that while traveling in her van she drove through roads that were totally under water. She says her fears were exacerbated by waterfalls that would suddenly form "from nowhere" and crash down the gorge.

The orange and yellow alerts that have been issued by the French Weather Service will be in place until 4:00 P.M. on Friday.

Marco Petnaga, a meteorologist with the Met Office in the United Kingdom, says that approximately three inches of rain fell in the area over a 24-hour timespan. Petagna explained that the rains took place in an area of France that has recently withstood the effects of hot weather. The meteorologist says that a cold front is expected to move through the area soon.

Petnaga provides an understanding of the weather event by explaining that when cold air attempts to enter a boundary where hot air is present, hot air will tend to show a rapid rise and form rain clouds. Petnega says there are still storms to deal with in the area but their frequency and intensity are both on a decline.

The flooding in Southern France is the latest in a string of extreme weather-instigated emergencies to affect the continent this year. These events include a wildfire in Greece that claimed the lives of 88 people.

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