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Man regrets naming storm 'Xynthia'

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Man regrets naming storm 'Xynthia'
Photo: DPA
08:37 CET+01:00
The man who named the weekend's deadly Atlantic storm "Xynthia" after winning a competition said on Monday he was sorry the name would now always be linked to death and destruction.

The storm unleashed gale force winds and torrential rains on western Europe on Sunday, killing more than 60 people and prompting France to declare a national emergency.

"I wanted the name to be used maybe once on the weather forecast and then to fall into oblivion," the 58-year-old German, who did not want to give his name, told AFP, adding that the name held no personal significance for him.

He won the right to name the storm after taking part in a competition organised by the Free University of Berlin's Institute of Meteorology, which has been responsible for naming storms in the western Atlantic for more than 50 years.

The vicious Atlantic storm “Xynthia” ravaged Germany at the weekend, killing at least six, injuring dozens and causing traffic chaos because of uprooted trees.

Click here for photos of the deadly storm.

In Lower Saxony a 46-year-old man died after colliding with a tree when his car was blown from the roadway, police said.

A 74-year-old German motorist was killed and his wife injured when a tree came crashing down on their car in the Black Forest. Falling trees also killed a woman jogging in the western town of Bergheim and a 69-year-old man walking in a forest west of Frankfurt, police said.

Media reports on Monday also said that a two-year-old boy drowned near Frankfurt after a gust of wind blew him into a river.

Several motorists were hurt as the deadly tempest made its way through Germany, including at Uckerath, south of Cologne, where two motorists were injured by trees falling onto the road, police said.

In the western city of Karlsruhe, several policemen were slightly injured when a tree fell on their truck outside a stadium during a football match.

Click here for The Local's weather forecast.

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