A floor in distress. Droughts have increased in recent weeks, as France broke its record for days without rain in February, with 32 consecutive days without precipitation, or too few to be really effective. As of March 6, 2023, four departments are on heightened alert:
Two departments are on the alert:
These drought episodes can have significant consequences on many aspects of everyday life, including the stability of your homes. This is explained to Planet Marco Paitrault, insurance expert and project manager in the service of disaster victims: “The consequences of drought can be very significant, even catastrophic. The houses of individuals are not very deeply founded. and some soils are very clayey: they shrink in summer with drought and swell in winter with rain”. A retraction of the ground which will mean that the foundation of the house is no longer necessarily resting on this ground, that it is no longer supported.
This expert has seen an increase in cases in recent years, estimating that “we will probably have double, or even triple, what we have experienced. There would currently be 10 million homes affected in the whole of France ” . Even more worrying, some cities that escaped it are now affected, such as Limoges, Lyon, Clermont-Ferrand, Montluçon…
If you notice a crack in your home, Marco Paitrault wants to be reassuring: “Most of the time there is no danger. In the vast majority of cases, you can enjoy a house with cracks, with cracks So there’s no need to panic if you notice a crack, you don’t have to worry, you have to watch it of course, but it shouldn’t become obsessive.” Monitoring the crack means watching how it lives, because it will “follow its path”, specifies the expert. Attention, expert advice: if you notice a crack in your home, wait until your municipality is recognized as being in a state of drought before declaring it to your insurance.
In some departments, you have to be particularly vigilant, because the houses can be more risky than elsewhere. The data specialist NamR has mapped the departments where the risks of shrinkage and swelling of clay are the greatest, reports BFMTV. Discover them in the slideshow below, as well as some cities that can also be particularly affected.