Storm damage deprives 240,000 homes of power in France

Storm damage deprives 240,000 homes of power in France

PARIS - Reuters
Storm damage deprives 240,000 homes of power in France

A man walks a dog as a storm brings heavy winds to Saint-Guenole, western France, on December 23, 2013. AFP photo

Fierce winds and rain battering France's west coast have caused damage depriving 240,000 homes of electricity, the country's grid said on Tuesday. 

Brittany and Normandy were among the regions worst hit by winds reaching speeds of 130 km an hour (80 mph) on Monday and which have so far caused one death. The storms began abating on Tuesday morning. 
France's ERDF electricity distribution network company said it had launched emergency efforts to address the damage to the network before the country's Christmas festivities start.

Storm problems hit Gatwick aiport, much of Britain

A severe winter storm has caused major travel problems in Britain and has led to substantial delays at London Gatwick Airport and on roads and rail lines.

The airport says its North Terminal is having "significant power outages" and advising passengers to check flight status before traveling to the airport.

In addition, Gatwick's website said Tuesday morning that no trains are running to or from the airport.

Rail officials said many trees fell during the night, leading to a reduction in services Tuesday morning, the start of one of the busiest travel days of the year for Britons trying to get home for Christmas.

Some roads have also been closed due to flooding and two dozen motorists were rescued from their vehicles overnight after becoming stranded.