The Heat Is Online

Paris Closes Airports Due to 75 mph Winds

Paris airports close for storms, Feb. 9, 2009


Paris airports have shut for 12 hours because extremely high winds are expected, transport officials say.


The French capital is facing winds of up to 120km/h (75mph), forecasters say.


The country is on storm alert with the French Atlantic coast expected to be worst hit. The airports are due to reopen at 0800 (0700GMT) on Tuesday.


But forecasters predict the storm will not be as bad as the one that lashed France on 14 January, leaving 11 dead and causing widespread damage.


Travellers have been asked not to head to either the city's Charles de Gaulle or Orly airports.


Charles de Gaulle is one the busiest airports in Europe.

Ferries are also affected. Services between Brittany and nearby islands have been suspended, operators Oceane and Penn Ar Bedd say.


Brittany Ferries has postponed the inaugural sailing on Tuesday of its service from Roscoff to Plymouth, in southern England.


The French navy has also put three rescue vessels on stand-by to sail to the aid of any shipping in difficulty. Sand bags have been deployed on sea-fronts exposed to potential flooding.


Freezing night


In England, heavy rain sweeping across the country has left many councils on "full alert" in preparation for floods.


The UK saw the heaviest snowfall for 18 years last week and forecasters warn more snow is on the way over parts of Wales and the Midlands.


Forecasters are also predicting another freezing night in the Scottish Highlands, after temperatures on Sunday night dropped to -18C (-0.4F), which the Met Office said was the lowest temperature since January 2003.