Heat wave and storm alert throughout France today

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[[[[UPDATE, August 12, 12:30 p.m.: 65 departments are now on orange alert, against 60.]

The 13 departments in red alert to heat waves include the entire Ile-de-France region and four departments in the North region (Aisne, Oise, Pas-de-Calais and Somme).

However, the red alerts were lifted today for the departments of Seine-Maritime and Eure in Normandy. This indicates that the heatwave, which began in France five days ago on August 7, is receding.

60 departments on orange alert today [now 65], 47 are expected to experience heat waves; five will see heat waves and storms; and eight will see only storms.

Weather forecaster Meteo France predicts that “the storms currently present along the Atlantic coast will intensify and become severe from mid-morning.”

Stormy weather along France’s west coast will bring heavy rain, hail and strong gusts of wind – but that should pass by tomorrow night (August 13), the forecaster said.

What is a “red alert” heat wave?

In France, a heat wave (heat wave) is defined as an extended period during which temperatures are high both day and night. In practice, different departments in France have different definitions of what this means. For example, in Toulouse, Meteo France describes a heat wave as three days and three nights during which the temperature does not drop below 21 ° C at night and exceed 36 ° C during the day.

A red alert (Red alert) the heatwave is classified as such hot weather that it can cause significant problems that require “exceptional” measures, such as saturation in hospitals and funeral homes, power cuts.

In such weather conditions, precautions are advised even for healthy people. These include:

  • Avoid playing sports
  • Drink water regularly and avoid alcohol
  • Eat regular meals, even if you are not hungry
  • Wash your body with water to cool it down
  • Spend at least three hours a day in a cool environment
  • Avoid going out in the middle of the day when the heat is at its highest
  • Keep shutters or curtains closed during the day and avoid using hot plates and ovens in the home

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