Hundreds evacuated in Paris as Seine water level rises
Hundreds evacuated in Paris as Seine water level rises
AFP NewscomMap shows areas of Paris affected by flooding
28 January, 2018, 01:11
The water level in the river is expected to peak at around 6m (19ft 6in), which is at least 4m above its normal level. "It is gone. You can only see the tops of some of the traffic signs".
Almost 400 people had to be rescued from rising flood water in and around Paris on Thursday, according to local police.
The Paris region has been deeply affected by the floods that hit the country over the past week, but in the capital city, it was business as usual for the most part.
Even as the levels are expected to go down, it could be a slow slog.
Another unsavory element to the flooding: a reported rat inundation. The rodents have been brought to the surface from the sewers by the flood waters.
Elsewhere the River Rhine, which originates in Switzerland and flows into the North Sea via Germany and the Netherlands, began receding from the peak reached last Tuesday after officials emptied some seven million cubic metres into a flood containment zone.
"The impact on Paris of a major flood would be much greater today than a century ago, with serious economic and social consequences on top of the temporary disruption and material losses", said Dr Rolf Alter, director of the OECD's public governance and territorial development directorate. In the floods of June 2016, which killed four people in France, it peaked at 6 metres.
The Seine reached 5.53 meters (over 18 feet) Thursday evening at the Austerlitz bridge in the east of the city.
However, authorities said on Saturday that the flooding won't be as bad as forecast earlier this week.
Deputy Mayor Colombe Brossel said in a phone interview that although the situation was serious, the floods would have few concrete consequences in Paris. In 1910, the Seine rose above 8.5 metres, giving Paris "the aspect of a beleaguered place", according to a New York Times report of the time.
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