Weather alerts multiply in France: will storms last into the weekend?

Gales of 130 km/h are predicted along the Channel. South-west also sees warnings raised

Winds will be particularly fierce in Normandy along the English Channel
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There are now 26 heightened weather warnings in place in France, including five new ones, in light of incoming Atlantic storms.

Dubbed ‘Depression Louis’, the main storm will hit northern France early this afternoon, bringing strong gales, as well as heavy rain to the west.

Winds of up to 130 km/h are expected along the Norman coast but may rise to 140 km/h in specific areas.

Some local TER services in the Hauts-de-France region have been cancelled due to the weather, with travellers in the region recommended to check if their journey is affected.

Another bout of Atlantic winds is set to affect the south-west, where heightened warnings have also been put in place, but will not be as strong as in the north.

Up to 60mm of rain could fall in areas of Deux-Sèvres and Vendée, where tier-three orange warnings are in place for heavy rain. Most of the department will see between 30mm and 50mm of rain.

Five new departments facing warnings

Météo France placed 21 departments on heightened alert yesterday, however at 06:00 today it added five more, all for strong winds.

These are Ardennes, Marne, Meuse, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, and Hautes-Pyrénées.

Elsewhere, the vast majority of the country is facing tier-two yellow warnings for wind, rain, stormy weather, strong waves, and avalanches.

Only five departments (the two in Corsica, Var, Vaucluse, and Bouches-du-Rhône) are not currently facing any warnings.

Read more: Storms in France: what to do if at home, out walking or in car

Will storms continue into the weekend?

The worst of the rain in the west of France should stop by early this evening, with Météo France set to lift the tier-three warning at 16:00.

In the north, wind warnings will remain until late evening, however they will be lifted by tomorrow (February 23).

As of 09:00 this morning, there are no tier-three warnings in place for Friday.

However, some meteorologists predict the high winds may continue, coinciding with the drop in temperatures expected over the weekend.

Strong rainfall is also expected in the south-west, but spread out over a number of days instead of falling in a short period.

You can keep up to date with all weather warning announcements through the official Météo France website. Note that these warnings often change throughout the course of the day, especially during periods of turbulent weather.

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