PARIS ( Associated Press) — Severe hail and thunderstorms in France have left one woman dead and 14 injured, as well as destroying vineyards and delaying flights.
Lightning struck the Eiffel Tower without causing damage and set roofs ablaze in eastern Paris, according to local authorities. Residents of southwestern France posted photos of hailstones the size of tennis balls online, and drivers in the Paris region shared images of flooded highways and skies darkened in broad daylight by storm clouds.
Thousands of homes were still without power on Sunday after Saturday’s storms across France, according to power company Enedis. Flight departures from Paris Orly airport were temporarily suspended on Saturday, and there were delays at Charles de Gaulle airport.
A woman swept away by floodwaters was found dead under a car in the historic city of Rouen, Normandy, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin tweeted. The circumstances of her death remained unclear.
In the Loire Valley, thousands of young people taking part in a large gathering of explorers had to seek shelter at the Chateau de Chambord when hail, lightning and thunder battered the area. The castle director told public broadcaster France-Info that some children had been treated for signs of hypothermia, but no serious injuries had been reported.
Rains also lashed Normandy’s beaches as veterans and others gathered for the 78th anniversary of the D-Day landings against the Nazis during World War II.