More Hérault beach huts take a battering

Paillote du Grand Travers (Hérault) subissant un coup de mer / © Nicolas Chatail, France 3 Occitanie

For six days, the wind has been howling on the beaches of Hérault, threatening the structure of the beach restaurants.

The owners have been anxious for days, with the sea wind blowing at more than 80 km / hour, with inevitable swells and high waves.

The night of Wednesday 24 to Thursday 25 was probably the most stressful.  One of the managers said that the water went under his hut, installed on stilts, but also over the floor. The water was everywhere, and equipment was broken.  Henri Zahonero told the story of these hours of anxiety.  “The sea was rising on the steps, it was relentless, it was scary! We stayed there until 2 o’clock in the morning. We could not have done anything, but at least we were there.”

Faced with rising water levels, some put sandbags in front of their establishments. Others created small sand dams.

A little further on, on the beach of Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone, another beach restaurant was spared: the water stopped at the wooden stairs and the customers could continue to be welcomed, as explained by Frédéric Château, the manager.  “The prefecture did not make us close, but we still had to check that the structure was safe.”

As reported yesterday, in Sète, Le Cabanon de la Plage was the most affected on Monday, after being opened for only two days.  The hut, completely flooded, had to be dismantled and is being reassembled. It should reopen within two weeks at the most.

The good weather is now returning, and it should be settled for the weekend.

Here is Jérôme Gaussen and Nicolas Chatail’s report.

Source: France 3