The Daily Telegraph

20 still miss­ing in French floods as bod­ies found on Ital­ian beach

- By Henry Samuel in Paris and Nick Squires in Rome

SEVEN peo­ple have been con­firmed dead and up to 20 miss­ing af­ter floods hit south­ern France over the week­end, ac­cord­ing to lo­cal au­thor­i­ties, as neigh­bour­ing Italy says it has found six bod­ies on its shores.

France con­firmed three more deaths yes­ter­day, bring­ing the death toll to four in France and three in Italy. Emer­gency ser­vices say an­other eight peo­ple swept away by floods are “miss­ing” and a fur­ther 13 “pre­sumed miss­ing”.

“I fear that the death toll will, un­for­tu­nately, climb as we in­ves­ti­gate on the ground,” warned Charles-ange Ginésy, head of the Alpes-mar­itimes depart­men­tal coun­cil.

In Italy, it was first thought that six bod­ies found on beaches – five men and a woman – had died dur­ing the storms, their bod­ies then washed out to sea and car­ried to the Ital­ian Riviera.

But Bernard Gon­za­lez, the pre­fect of the Alpes-mar­itimes re­gion, said they were “very prob­a­bly” al­ready dead and in coffins that had been washed away from ceme­ter­ies in France.

Storm Alex brought flash floods and tor­ren­tial rain to parts of France and Italy. Up to 20in of rain fell in less than 10 hours, a vol­ume not seen since records be­gan, ac­cord­ing to Jean Cas­tex, the French prime min­is­ter.

Al­most 1,000 fire­men were drafted into the re­gion to search for the miss­ing and re-es­tab­lish com­mu­ni­ca­tions.

Eric Ciotti, head of the ProvenceAl­pes-côte d’azur re­gion, said the dam­age would cost an es­ti­mated bil­lion eu­ros to re­pair.

Ten trucks of food aid are be­ing dis­patched to the area from Nice and Em­manuel Macron, the French pres­i­dent, is due to visit later this week.

 ??  ?? A car hangs on the edge of a road that has been washed away by flood­ing in Breil-sur-roya. Ve­hi­cles were left stranded or en­cased in mud through­out south­ern France
A car hangs on the edge of a road that has been washed away by flood­ing in Breil-sur-roya. Ve­hi­cles were left stranded or en­cased in mud through­out south­ern France

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