Severe weather reached parts of the UK and France.
Intense rainfalls and thunderstorms recently wreaked havoc in various parts of the UK and France, leaving a trail of flash floods and destruction in their wake. These extreme weather events, which are increasingly linked to the broader climate crisis, serve as stark reminders of the profound impact weather can have on our lives.
Heavy rains across the UK. Exeter Airport closed by flooding.
In the UK, torrential downpours unleashed chaos as roads turned into makeshift rivers. In areas of Devon and Somerset, heavy rains triggered flash flooding that disrupted daily life. Shocking videos from Kenton, Devon, depicted rainwater rushing down streets, transforming a village square into a temporary watercourse that residents navigated in their boots.
The local firefighting teams were inundated with distress calls as flash floods wreaked havoc on roads, homes, and other structures on September 17. The relentless rain even led to the closure of Exeter Airport. The airport staff worked tirelessly overnight to mitigate the flooding and eagerly awaited the return of passengers.
Further down the coast, the Butlin's resort in Minehead faced days of closure due to severe flood damage. This beloved family holiday destination fell victim to the fury of the extreme weather that battered parts of the South West.
Tornado was spotted in Mayenne, France.
France also witnessed its share of violent storms. In an unusual turn of events, a tornado struck the Mayenne department in the northwest of the country on a Sunday afternoon. It left a trail of destruction, damaging roofs and destroying agricultural buildings.
While there were no fatalities, one person required hospitalization. Mayenne was not initially on high alert, marked by orange vigilance, but was instead placed under yellow vigilance. An ongoing investigation aims to determine the tornado's exact path and intensity.
Floods washed cars away in France.
Meanwhile, in southern France on September 16, a severe thunderstorm unleashed dramatic flash floods in Saint-Martin-de-Londres. The market square bore witness to a deluge that lifted cars and wreaked havoc on ground-level properties. Mayor Gerard Brunel noted that while this commune had experienced flooding in the past, it had never witnessed such ferocity.
Local reports indicated that over 500 millimeters of rain fell on the upper cantons of the Herault on that Saturday, equivalent to several months' worth of rainfall. Thanks to the swift response of the fire brigade, several dozen residents were rescued to safety, and no casualties were reported. However, the aftermath left roads washed away, impassable due to landslides or debris.