2 dead and 600,000 homes without electricity after strong winds hit France

Winds gusting up to hurricane force battered west and central France on Monday, leaving two people dead and 600,000 homes without electricity, the authorities said. Storm Zeus - named after the paramount god in Greek mythology - hit the Atlantic coas
PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Winds gusting up to hurricane force battered west and central France on Monday, leaving two people dead and 600,000 homes without electricity, the authorities said. Storm Zeus - named after the paramount god in Greek mythology - hit the Atlantic coast before sweeping across to the centre and south-east of the country. Weather experts said they measured gusts of up to 193kmh in the west. The driver of a lorry carrying gas canisters was killed when a falling branch hit his vehicle in the southern French Alps while a motorist in the south-west died when his car was struck by a 20m-tall tree. Seven young people were injured in the west and south-west by falling debris, with three seriously injured. Some 600,000 properties lost electricity, according to power distributor Enedis, the highest such number since a monster storm in 1999 that left scores dead and three million households without power. Pounding rain also forced the closure of a motorway to Paris, Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said in a statement.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 08, 2017, with the headline '2 dead and 600,000 homes without electricity after strong winds hit France'. Print Edition | Subscribe