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Rain and flood fear for residents

Weather forecasters say one month’s rain fell in two days – but improvement is on the way

A SIXTH department in the south-west has been put on orange alert for heavy rains and flooding, with Tarn residents being warned alongside Ariège, Haute-Garonne, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Hautes-Pyrénées. Residents in Gers have been warned to beware flooding.

The rainstorms are expected to reduce this afternoon but will continue until at least Sunday afternoon.

And the flood risk will remain for days to come, especially with the expected snow-melt being added to the storms that have seen a month’s rain fall over the past two days.

Météo France says that a band of stormy weather over west Tarn has meant up to 6cm of rain but even heavier at the border with Aude – which has seen up to 10cm since yesterday afternoon.

Weathermen say the rains will spread into the Pyrenees with intense rains over the south Lot and Ariège and bringing up to 10cm of rains round the Haute-Bigorre area of Hautes-Pyrénées.

France Info forecaster Joël Collado says that the dismal weather period which has hurt farmers and builders is coming to an end and that temperatures will rise over the next week in the west and in Paris. The improvement will extend to the rest of the country by the next week and he said: “It’s the end of the tunnel.”

Already this winter has been declared the coldest since 1987 – with just 3.7C in Paris on May 24. The previous record low dates back to 1887.

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