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France's spring coldest since 1987

media Rain soaks the red carpet at Cannes as guests arrive for the screening of the film 'Jimmy P.' (Psychotherapy of a Plains Indian) this week Reuters/Regis Duvignau

Spring this year is the coldest in France since 1987, weather-watchers said Saturday. Paris experienced the lowers temperature for the time of year since 1887 on Friday morning.

Although spring, usually counted as the beginning of March to the end of May, is not yet over, the Météo France weather-forecasting service believes there is no saving it from being the coldest for 26 years and the wettest for five years.

Interactive map of France

“To find a spring this wet we have to go back to 2008,” Météo France’s François Jobard told the AFP wire service on Saturday. “But in 2008 temperatures weren’t so low.”

There has been more rain on the Côte d’Azur, the swish French Riviera, than at any time since records began, with 429mm in Nice since 1 March.

There was much less sunshine than usual everywhere in France, except in some parts of Brittany, Jobard reported.

With snow in many mountain areas, including in Corsica, and rainfall elsewhere this weekend, a substantial improvement is not expected before the end of the month, although temperatures have risen slightly in the Paris region this weekend.

Cannes 2013

Temperatures in Paris early on Friday morning were a chilly 3.7°C, the lowest since 1887 and the national average is 5.0°C lower than normal, 10.0°C lower in some areas.

Two motorists were seriously injured near the eastern city of Annecy on Saturday in an accident caused by a surprise hailstorm.

All of western Europe has suffered unseasonally cold weather for the last three weeks.

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