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Paris flood waters expected to rise after river Seine breaks banks

Paris flood waters expected to rise after river Seine breaks banks

Nearly 400 people have been evacuated from their homes in the Paris region as a precaution as rivers across France kept swelling.

Paris isn't the only place in the flood zone: at least 15 French departments (the rough equivalent of counties in the US) across the north and east of the country are on alert for more flooding, the Associated Press reports, even as a break from heavy rain is in the forecast.

The water level will likely continue to rise until Saturday and is expected to peak at around 19.5 feet, according to deputy mayor Colombe Brossel, the Washington Post reported.

Much of France has been lashed by downpours throughout January, inundating many homes and shops with muddy water and halting trains on a busy commuter line that runs through Paris. Though the city is not infrequently hit with similar conditions - 2016 saw a similar disaster - a legendary flood in 1910, during which the river reached 28 feet, holds the record.

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The Seine reached 5.53 metres (over 18ft) on Thursday evening at the Austerlitz bridge in the east of the city. No major incident was observed.

Ducks swim on the flooded banks of the river Seine in Paris, Jan. 23, 2018.

The Seine in Paris continued to rise on Thursday, covering quays and putting museums on an emergency footing as the river gets set to reach a peak of up to 6.2 metres on Saturday.

"Since then, a large number of reserve collections has been packed to ensure their rapid evacuation in the event of flooding, and staff have also been trained", the Louvre said in a statement.

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