Northern France Braces for More Rain, Schools Closed Amid Lingering Flood Threat

Tue Nov 14 2023
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PARIS: A recent bout of rain in northern France has led to the closure of schools and reignited concerns of further distress following last week’s devastating floods in the Pas-de-Calais department. Officials have directed closure of schools and nurseries in all 279 towns of the department until Tuesday, affecting 388 establishments. The precipitation is anticipated to intensify on Tuesday, prompting a warning from the prefecture.

Vigicrues, the official river flooding watchdog, has issued an orange alert for potential flooding in four rivers in the Pas-de-Calais and Nord regions, including Aa, Canche, and Hem. The situation remains critical, particularly in the village of Neuville-sous-Montreuil, where Cyril Theriez, a restaurant owner, continues to pump water out of his home. The village remains submerged, with continuous light rain adding to the challenges since early morning.

Cyril Theriez shared his ordeal, recounting that floodwaters reached 1.6 meters (5 feet) in his cellar two days ago but have since receded to 20 centimeters. Despite this temporary respite, the town stays on high alert, with the looming uncertainty of rising water levels.

Pas-de-Calais, already reeling from the aftermath of Storm Ciaran in early November, experienced record floods last week. The most recent weather outlook from Meteo-France anticipates showers on Wednesday, with unfavorable weather conditions set to return and linger until Monday, extending the risk of flooding in the area.

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