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Elisabeth Borne helping the victims of Pas-de-Calais

The Prime Minister, Elisabeth Borne, goes to Montreuil-sur-Mer, in Pas-de-Calais, Thursday November 16. She must meet security and emergency forces as well as residents of this town crossed by the Canche, a coastal river still on orange alert for flood risks.

Part of the Montreuil citadel, dating from the 16th centurye century, collapsed on November 10. The Prime Minister will then discuss with mayors of the department. “The aftermath is going to be very complicated. People are tired, exhausted, psychologically, physically, morally”explains to Agence France-Presse Gwenaëlle Loire, mayor of Saint-Léonard, a town located around fifty kilometers away.

“We are recognized (in condition) natural disaster, but now the State will have to give us the means because I think that houses will be declared unsanitary by the experts, so people will no longer be able to live in their houses”she explains, worrying about the rehousing, or even the permanent departure, of certain residents.

Depression Frederico arrives from the west

Although the damage promises to be major, the human toll has been four injured since November 6, according to the Pas-de-Calais prefecture. After a slight lull, the rains could resume on Thursday, Météo-France communicates in its latest bulletin: a new depression, called Frederico, “circulates in the north of the country on a Brittany-Alsace axis”.

It is accompanied by a strengthening of the wind, “but also an increase in precipitation, particularly in the north-east of the country”. Wednesday’s lull “allowed a decline” in several basins in the department, but the return of rains expected on Thursday “could cause further increases on sections under surveillance”warns Vigicrues, reporting floods “very important” underway in the Lys plain and on the Canche. These two rivers, as well as the Hem, are still on orange alert. The North, Charente-Maritime and Vendée are also on orange alert for floods. Puy-de-Dôme will be placed on orange alert for winds at midday.

Read the analysis: Article reserved for our subscribers Floods in Pas-de-Calais: in the most affected areas, “the economy is no longer running and people are breaking down, they are at their wits’ end”

After the gradual reopening on Wednesday of middle and high schools in the affected areas, most of the 1,290 schools closed since Monday will reopen on Thursday, the prefecture announced. However, 21 schools are unable to accommodate students and school transport remains very disrupted.

Drinking water supply still faces restrictions for 7,200 people in the Samer sector; a situation which should last until the middle of the week, specifies the same source, adding that more than 500 homes are deprived of electricity and more than 4,000 subscribers deprived of mobile phones.

For the departmental president of the Red Cross, Fabienne Berquier, “the main challenge now is to find lasting rehousing solutions for disaster victims who will not be able to return home”in houses where there are “humidity up to 1.60 meters, no more heating or electricity”.

More than 200 municipalities recognized as being in a state of natural disaster

The recognition in a state of natural disaster of 181 municipalities in Pas-de-Calais and 24 in the North was published on Wednesday in Official newspaper. Traveling in the department on Tuesday, Mr. Macron announced the unblocking of a “support fund” of 50 million euros for affected communities.

“We talk a lot about Pas-de-Calais, but I don’t forget that there was a storm in Brittany a few days ago, with residents who are not entitled to the natural disaster rules”announced the Minister of Ecological Transition, Christophe Béchu, Thursday on France 2.


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He recalled that in terms of insurance, “a cyclone is a natural disaster; a flood is a natural disaster; a storm is not a natural disaster »evoking grids unsuitable for climate change. “We are working on all climate events to review the grid of natural disasters, the way we deal with them, our rules are not adapted to climate change”declared Mr. Béchu.

The minister announced that“at the request of the President of the Republic, We are currently working on setting up an emergency and solidarity fund which will provide exceptional support to those in Brittany who were affected by storms Ciaran and Domingos.”.

On Wednesday, the government announced that for farmers who suffered floods in Hauts-de-France, Brittany and Normandy, another fund, of 80 million euros, would be activated. Since November 6, some 1,400 people have been evacuated because of these floods, exceptional in their duration and intensity.

Although they constitute natural phenomena, floods, cyclones and droughts can be amplified by global warming generated by human activities.

Also read the report: Article reserved for our subscribers In Pas-de-Calais, after historic floods, mutual aid, fatigue and the hope of a lull

The World with AFP

Gn Fr France

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