After the flames, the torrents of water. Ravaged by violent fires until Monday 23 August, which devastated more than 7,100 hectares of forest, the Var was hit by severe weather. On Tuesday, August 24 in the afternoon, the PACA region was locally affected by violent thunderstorms, accompanied by hail and intense rains. In some areas, between 50 and 80 mm of rain fell, sometimes in less than an hour, or the equivalent of two to three months of rain.
In the village of Pignans in particular, a thunderstorm erupted around 3 p.m., transforming the streets into a torrent in a few minutes. According to a press release from the prefecture, numerous relief interventions were deployed by 140 firefighters mobilized, while the departmental operational center was activated at 4.30 p.m. Up to 120mm of precipitation fell there in just a few minutes, causing extensive flooding in some areas.
While no casualties are to be deplored, some residents have had a cold sweat. Water has seeped everywhere, like at Jocelyne’s, whose living room is still stained with large puddles all over the floor. Trapped by the water, the old woman could no longer leave her home, before a neighbor came to free her, as well as her dogs, while her terrace “was completely flooded with water” by “almost a meter. “.
“We did manage to hang out with the dogs, somehow, but I thought my last hour was over,” she says in the video above. Without “any way out”, she remembers, she begins to despair: “I said to myself, that’s it, it’s over. And then my neighbor Kamel arrived, luckily he got us out of the.”
In the still rumbling storm, Kamel did not hesitate to rescue her elderly neighbor. “She was crying ‘help, help’, in the middle of the water, he says in the video below. As soon as she opened the door for me, she fell under the pressure of the water. (…) We took the two dogs and we went out in a hurry. “
While she can be temporarily hosted by her family, Jocelyne doesn’t know where to start cleaning her house, blown away by the current that has moved the furniture and brought leaves and twigs inside.
A few meters away, by the side of the road, a resident piles up cardboard boxes devastated by the water, all precious sentimental possessions destroyed by the flood. “These are all my records,” she laments. The whole street was flooded, and some residents lost everything. “The water went over the car, and there are also papers, photos, sentimental things that we put away thinking it was safe, we didn’t think it would happen. something like that “, testifies another inhabitant.
In the village, pumping and cleaning operations were set up, and the victims were able to reach their homes at the end of the evening. The departmental operational center was lifted at 7 p.m.
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