The decline of the Aa, the coastal river of Pas-de-Calais placed on red alert, began on Thursday January 4. Many localities still have their feet in the water. A rainy deterioration is also expected on Thursday from the northwest, according to Météo-France forecasts, while the department is still on red alert for floods.

According to the Pas-de-Calais prefecture, more than 370 people have had to be evacuated since the start of this new episode of flooding, including 115 since Wednesday morning. Christophe Béchu, the minister of ecological transition, and Olivier Véran, the government spokesperson, go to Arques, where the Aa passes, Thursday morning, before going to the Montreuil-sur-Mer region at the start afternoon, meeting elected officials and affected residents.

The Aa still on red alert

Thursday morning, more rain will invade Brittany. In the afternoon they will reach the Pays de la Loire to extend to Hauts-de-France. The westerly wind will reach 70 to 80 km/h in Brittany, temporarily up to 90 km/h and even 100 km/h on the south of the Breton coasts.

In Pas-de-Calais, the Aa, placed on red alert since Tuesday, “is generally at the same level as in November”, when it reached its highest historical level, Vigicrues described to the Agency France-Presse. Levels could still increase “very slightly”, but “we can consider that we are at the peak of this flood”, adds the organization.

Throughout Hauts-de-France, floods are significant, leading to the closure of dozens of road sections. Bottled water distributions are underway, 2,100 residents were deprived of drinking water on Wednesday evening, according to the prefecture.

Installation of civil security pumps

While more than 10,000 homes were deprived of electricity on Wednesday in the Nord and Pas-de-Calais, 95% of them were replenished by the end of the day, assured the distribution network manager of electricity Enedis.

Aerial images of Esquerdes, near Blendecques, reveal entire blocks of houses underwater and torrents of muddy water rushing down gardens. In Eperlecques, another town in the Saint-Omer agglomeration, the town center is flooded, again according to the prefecture.

Four civil security pumps must be installed in the Mardyck sector (North) on Thursday. Other European pumping means “are being transported from the Czech Republic, Slovakia and the Netherlands to be operational on Friday”, according to the General Directorate of Civil Security.

The floods also affect four other departments in the north-east of France, classified on orange alert: the Ardennes, Aisne, Meuse and Nord. In its latest bulletin, published at 6 a.m., Météo-France lifted the orange flood alert for Meurthe-et-Moselle and Moselle, which returned to yellow.