The violent floods are said to be the worst that the Aude river has seen in over more than 100 years. The cause was that the area got hit by several months of rain in a few hours. Meteorologists claimed that exceptionally warm sea water had further intensified the seasonal rainfall.
The calmest Aude region (south-west) was hit by the violent storms causing about ten people to lose their lives. A red alert has been issued in the neighbourhood urging residents of worst-hit areas to stay inside their respective homes and schools too remained closed. Also, an amber warning for floods is issued for nearby regions.
Significant disasters include a bridge which was torn down and got carried away by the force of water in Villegailhenc. Among the victims was a nun who got swept away by the River Aude, died in Villardonnel, a village near Carcassonne. Initially, French ministry announced 13 deaths, but later the number was corrected to 10 as some victims were mistakenly counted twice.
Reports also claim that around seven helicopters and about 700 emergency service workers were deployed. France Prime Minister wishes to visit the affected area if conditions allow. Firemen have said to be responded to more than 250 calls that night.
The worst hit was in the town of Trebes. A few victims claimed it was too intense and dangerous. In some villages, water rose as high as that of the first-floor windows of some houses. From Pezens, about 1000 people have been evacuated. The mesmerising cities and villages hit by the flood have now left nothing but a trail of overturned cars, damaged roads, broken bridges and collapsed homes. Social media was flooded with tweets by various people including PM Philippe.
“A place which used to be flooded with vivid memories has now faced nothing but a violent flood, human blood and washed the houses that turned to mud!”