Hundreds evacuated from campsites as southern France hit by flash flooding

Saint-Julien-de-Peyrolas southern France.- The bad weather caused large power cuts and a man who was working in a summer camp went

A 70-year-old German man who was helping supervise children at one of the camps went missing on Thursday, thought to have been swept by the strong currents of flood water.

A top regional official, Thierry Dousset, told French news channel BFM TV that the some 750 people evacuated came from five campsites.

Rescuers believe the man sought shelter in his camper when fast-flowing water burst the banks of the nearby L'Ardeche River, but the vehicle was swept away.

Heavy floods have forced the evacuation of 1600 people - majority campers - in southern France, officials say. Everything is being done to try and find him, with waterways being searched where possible.

The Gard government also said four German children were hospitalized Thursday for hypothermia in Bagnols-sur-Ceze.

The worst hit areas are Gard, Ardèche and Drôme, which are all popular holiday sites.

The spokesman said: "Like everybody else, they should remain on their guard".

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Footage posted on social media showed dramatic scenes of flooding.

"No one has suitcases".

Rescuers walk past a damaged tent in a flooded camp ground in Saint-Julien-de-Peyrolas, southern France.

Hundreds of firefighters and police took part in the rescue operations, using helicopters to help spot affected campsites and carry out some people.

UK Met Office meteorologist Marco Petagna said almost 3in of rain fell over the area in 24 hours. Authorities warned that the flooding would take time to recede and urged people to be vigilant. A sizzling heatwave across Spain has left 10 people dead in a week.

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. Around 17,000 homes in the southwest and northeast were without power.

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