The coast of Normandy, particularly in the Manche, is set to be battered by gales again this week and high tides are adding the risk of flooding.Â According to Franceâ€™s meteorological service MÃ©tÃ©o France, 100 kilometre per hour winds are likely on Tuesday nightÂ into Wednesday and again at the weekend. The winds are set to be strongest around the more exposed coastal areas and MÃ©tÃ©o France is also predicting more rain which will swell rivers where water levels are already high and could cause flooding in coastal areas where there are also risks of high seas and giant waves causing flooding.
In land wind speeds of 70 to 90 kilometres per hour can be expected. The winds should lessen during the day on Sunday. Coastguards are warning people not to go to the coast to watch the huge waves because of the danger of being swept away.Â There is also a risk of hail in Upper Normandy and winds gusting to 90 kilometres per hour. â€˜The weather will beÂ very unstable over the next few days with high winds and frequent showers,â€™ said a spokesman from Meteo Franceâ€™s Rouen office.
It is also dangerous for shipping in the Channel. Several container ships have reported containers being swept overboard and some have been seen floating off the Manche coast near La Hague. The coastguard said they could be a danger to small vessels.
Neighbouring Brittany is likely to see even fiercer winds, up to 140 kilometres per hour and several departmentsÂ have been placed on Orange alert, the second highest weather warning. Some ferries from the Channel Islands have been cancelled and anyone travelling is being advised to check with ferry operators. Meanwhile, January has been officially declared one of the warmest on record and also saw some of the worst floods.
This has been caused by higher than average rain fall and winds and air coming from the south west. Since 1900 there have only been two January’s which were milder; 1988 and 1936. And recorded rainfall has been on average 30% higher than normal for the time of year.