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Holidaymakers evacuated as floods hit southern France

Holidaymakers evacuated as floods hit southern France

A British woman who was on holiday in the neighbouring Ardeche region said floodwaters that hit a site near one river were extraordinary.

"We woke up in about a foot of water".

About 750 people in all were evacuated in Gard, mainly from campsites, a top district official, Thierry Dousset, told France's BFM-TV news channel. All in the group, who are from the city of Leverkusen, are all accounted for and safe.

Ten people, including four German children, have been taken to hospital with hypothermia and minor injuries, according to regional police spokesman Jérôme Tallaron. Everything is being done to try and find him, with waterways being searched where possible.

The Gard is hugely popular with British holidaymakers in August, while many others from the United Kingdom have retired to the area, or have second homes there.

He was the only person unaccounted for after a rescue operation at three campsites in the area, where a heatwave ended abruptly this week in storms that caused flash flooding.

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Videos posted on social media showed flood water rushing through populated areas.

More than 400 firefighters and police - as well as four helicopters - have been deployed.

The statement added that 119 children from a campsite in the town of Saint-Julien-de-Peyrolas in southern France had been "sheltered" from the floods.

Many roads in the area were left cut off, with the authorities urged members of the public to be prepared for more disruption.

Pictures showed rescuers wading through flooded campsites with damage to tents, caravans and bicycles.

The French weather service has issued orange and yellow alerts for parts of southeast France that will remain in place until 4pm.