January 14, 2000 |
The 115-foot cedar that towered over the park where Marie Antoinette played at being a milkmaid more than two centuries ago has been virtually torn from the earth. An even taller pine planted for Napoleon is now smashed to bits, some smaller than a pencil. In the gardens and woods of Versailles, where the lords and ladies of France once strolled and flirted, 100 tree surgeons, gardeners and landscapers have been working seven days a week, some with no time off since Christmas.
January 4, 2000 |
French officials said Monday that it would take weeks to finish reconnecting electricity and telephones across the country after a pair of storms a week ago that were described as the worst in centuries. Preliminary estimates put damage done by the successive winter gales that hit the north of France on Dec. 26 and the south a day later at a minimum of $4 billion.
January 3, 2000 |
A week after killer storms struck France, half a million homes remained without electricity Sunday, officials said. The nation's death toll rose to 88 after the bodies of a young couple were found in a house whose roof had caved in. At one stage last week, 3.4 million homes had no power. The head of French power company Electricite de France said Sunday that restoring power in rural communities was proving difficult.
December 30, 1999 |
Six thousand troops were deployed in France on Wednesday and the national electricity company brought workers out of retirement as the country tapped all its resources to clean up and to restore power to millions of homes after this week's deadly storms. The government set aside $22 million in aid for the ravaged areas to help clear debris and repair damage. More aid will go toward cleaning up an oil slick polluting France's Atlantic coast.
December 29, 1999 |
Thousands of people in France faced the prospect of New Year's Eve without electricity after a second killer storm in three days brought fierce winds, torrential rains and violent waves to the coast. Across Western Europe, the death toll from the storms reached 120. The brunt of the latest system hit France's southwestern corner, leaving a trail of destruction similar to the one that struck the north on Sunday: fallen power lines, uprooted trees, collapsed roofs and streets strewn with debris.
December 27, 1999 |
Powerful winds and rain swept across Europe on Sunday, ripping trees out of the ground, tearing roofs off buildings and killing at least 48 people in France, Switzerland and Germany. Paris was buffeted by the strongest winds to hit the capital in half a century. Gusts up to 105 mph tore through northern France, where the Interior Ministry said at least 26 people were killed, some when falling trees crashed onto their cars.