Paris braces for floods as swollen Seine inches higher

The river reached 5.7 metres (19 feet) at 9:00 am (0800 GMT) on Saturday, more than four metres above its normal height, causing headaches for commuters as well as people living near its overflowing banks.

Paris braces for floods as swollen Seine inches higher

World Bulletin / News Desk

Paris was on alert Saturday as the swollen Seine continued to creep higher, with forecasters expecting the flooding to peak at the end of the weekend.

Forecasters believe it will continue to rise, peaking on Sunday night or Monday, but will not reach the 2016 high of 6.1 metres, when the Louvre museum was forced to close its doors for four days.

But the world's most visited museum was on high alert on Saturday, along with the Musee d'Orsay and Orangerie galleries, with the lower level of the Louvre's Islamic arts wing closed to visitors.

Leaks had started to appear in some basements on Friday, while some residents on the city's outskirts were forced to travel by boat through waterlogged streets.

A health centre in Paris's northwestern suburbs, where 86 patients were receiving care, was also evacuated on Friday.

In total more than 650 people have been evacuated from their homes in the Paris region, according to police, while more than 1,400 were without electricity.

The Vigicrues flooding agency scaled back its peak predictions for the river in the capital, saying it will top out at 5.9 to 6 metres (19 to 19.7 feet) on Sunday evening at the earliest, compared with 6.2 metres previously.

"Due to the spread of flooding to different tributaries, the level of the Seine in Paris will continue rising again on the weekend," said Vigicrues, adding that highest level would last for about 10 hours before slowly going down.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 27 Ocak 2018, 16:18