A cruise ship was left drifting in the port of Cherbourg (Normandy) on Wednesday (April 12) after high winds ripped it free from its moorings.
Ambience, which was on its way from Ireland to Honfleur (Normandy), had docked there to shelter from stormy weather in northern France, which saw gusts of up to 135km/h lash exposed coastal areas.
The drama unfolded when a mooring bollard broke, which saw ropes holding the ship to the dock snap.
The incident caused damage to the hull and part of the gangway was pictured hanging from the ship as it drifted away from the dock, with passengers still onboard.
A number of tugboats were deployed to tow the ship back to the dock, preventing further damage to the ship.
No injuries were reported.
High drama in Cherbourg. High winds have caused the ropes securing cruise ship Ambience to snap and maroon ship from harbour. Gang plank ended up in harbour. Tugs are now pushing the ship to keep stop it from drifting #cherbourg #cruiselife #ambience #windyweather pic.twitter.com/Kyy1svUv9v— Neil Stainsby (@Neilstainsby) April 12, 2023
Weather and strike disruption
Brittany Ferries has cancelled several cross-Channel services due to both the weather and strike action in France linked to the controversial pension reform plans.
The wind caused P&O and DFDS crossings to be delayed on Wednesday, too.
Inland, strike action disrupted train services across France on Thursday – only three-in-five regional TER services are running, and around 20% of TGV services have been cancelled.
Eurostar services are unimpacted, but some trains between France and Italy have been cancelled.
Regional public transport in several cities is also affected, and regional French airports are seeing the brunt of disruptions from strike action.
You can keep up-to-date with all major strike action announcements here via The Connexion’s updated coverage.
Bad weather set to continue on Thursday
The effects of storm Noa are set to continue on Thursday (April 13), with northern and western France expected to bear the brunt.
La #tempêteNoa présente un magnifique enroulement dépressionnaire autour des Îles Britanniques ! C'est en Manche, au sud de la dépression, que vont souffler les vents les plus forts. (via @Windycom) pic.twitter.com/0OHQMQHDuz— Guillaume Séchet (@Meteovilles) April 12, 2023
Sixty-three departments in France have yellow weather warnings - the third highest level - for stormy weather.
Yellow warnings indicate residents should be cautious when outside and keep up to date with local weather reports.
By Friday, however, the storm’s effects will have mostly diminished, with only the two Corsican departments facing storm warnings for tomorrow.
You can find more information on the official Météo France website here.