Gales, floods to hit west and north France
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Vast swathes of France, from Brittany to the north-east and including Paris, were expecting power cuts and blocked roads as they were placed on high alert for gale-force winds and torrential rain on Thursday. After storm Petra caused flooding and damage to property on the west coast of France gone, Qumaira was expected to arrive from Portugal.
The highest level warning was issued on Thursday morning with Qumaira hitting the western region of Brittany during the day and heading for the north-eastern part of the country during the night.
High tides and giant waves were expected on the western coasts and three departments in Brittany - Finistère, Morbihan and Loire-Atlantique - were on red alert.
Heavy rain was forecast Finistère, and the rivers Morlaix and Laita were expected to burst their banks.
In total 29 departments, including the Paris area, the Loire and Normandy, were on storm alert.
Gale-force winds up to 120km/h were expected inland and the storms was due to hit Paris during the night.
The stormy was forecast to last until Monday.
Yesterday, a Spanish cargo split in two after crashing into a sea wall near the harbour of the south-western town of Bayonne.
Overnight part of the boat broke free and sank below the water.
On Tuesday more than 25,000 people were without power in Brittany.
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