14:38 GMT +322 October 2019
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    A man reacts as he wades through flood waters near cars after flooding caused by torrential rain in Biot, France

    Flash Floods in French Riviera Compared to Deluge of Noah (PHOTO)

    © REUTERS / Eric Gaillard
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    French President Francois Hollande arrived on Sunday in southeastern France where heavy storms and flooding have left at least 16 people dead, with several more still unaccounted for.

    President Hollande announced a state of "natural disaster" in the affected Côte d’Azur region.

    The President offered condolences to the families of the victims  and pledged government assistance to all those affected by the disaster.

    Torrential rains hit the French Riviera, flooding rail terminals and motorways and leaving thousands of households without electricity.

    A boy stands next to rubble and damaged cars after violent storms and floods in Biot, southeastern France
    © AFP 2019 / JEAN CHRISTOPHE MAGNENET
    A boy stands next to rubble and damaged cars after violent storms and floods in Biot, southeastern France

    The city of Nice is estimated to have received 10 percent of its average yearly rainfall in two days alone. The river Brague burst its banks, sending water gushing into nearby towns and cities.

    Three elderly people drowned when floodwaters inundated their retirement home near the city of Antibes.

    Others died trapped in their cars in tunnels and underground car parks as the waters rose.

    A man carrying his bicycle tries to make his way after floods in Biot, near Cannes, southeastern France
    © AP Photo / Lionel Cironneau
    A man carrying his bicycle tries to make his way after floods in Biot, near Cannes, southeastern France

    The areas worst hit by flooding were also the hardest to access, officials said, raising fears the death toll could rise. About 27,000 homes remained without power early on Sunday, 14,000 of them in Cannes.

    The Elysée palace announced on Sunday that victims of the flooding will receive help from the state under a French law that gives compensation to victims of natural disasters.

    People look at an abandoned car trapped in muddy waters near an underpass after flooding caused by torrential rain in Cannes, France
    © REUTERS / Eric Gaillard
    People look at an abandoned car trapped in muddy waters near an underpass after flooding caused by torrential rain in Cannes, France

    A tweet from the president’s office said it would be paid within three months.

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