Triggering of the drought alert in the Alpes-Maritimes

15 March 2023

Due to weather conditions, the washing of vehicles and ships is again prohibited throughout the Alpes-Maritimes department. This measure is applicable to all ports on the Riviera.

Significant pressure on water resources is currently present throughout the Alpes-Maritimes.

After a year 2022 marked by an exceptional drought, the rainfall in the Alpes-Maritimes department during the recharge period between September 2022 and March 2023 is once again in deficit, of the order of -30% to -55% compared to compared to the average. The month of February 2023 is particularly loss-making (-87%).

As a result, the flows of the rivers and groundwater are abnormally low for the season and the snowpack is around 60% below the average for the department.

The Alpes-Maritimes department is therefore placed on the “drought” alert stage and the use of water is regulated in the territory.

The prefectural decree* published on March 13 notably prohibits the washing of vehicles, watercraft (motorized or not) and ships. Green spaces are also concerned: no watering in 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.

These water restriction measures, recalled in the decree available on apply to all uses, with the exception of priority uses related to health, safety and civil security.

In the event of non-compliance with the prescriptions, users are liable to a 5th class fine, i.e. €1,500 for a natural person.

*Consult the prefectural decree