Saturday 23 June 2018

Alert over swollen rivers in France after heavy rain

An orange alert has been issued for some parts of the country – the second-highest level of vigilance.

Experts have urged people to be on the alert (AP)
Experts have urged people to be on the alert (AP)

By Associated Press Reporters

Train services have been disrupted and soldiers are preparing to assist as rivers across France continue to swell following heavy rain.

Meteo France, the national weather agency, said 23 departments remain on orange alert, the second highest level of vigilance, and urged people to limit their journeys and to be on the alert.

The weather has improved in large parts of the country, but more rain is expected on Thursday.

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A flooded in Paris (AP)

In the south-eastern Paris suburb of Villeneuve-Saint-Georges, which is crossed by both the Seine and its Yerres tributary, local mayor Sylvie Altman said soldiers will be deployed to help evacuate the population.

Police forces and the fire brigade are already on site, patrolling flooded streets on small boats.

Ms Altman told France Info radio that water levels are expected to keep rising until Friday.

“We should get military trucks to help us evacuate and make people move along,” she said.

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The Seine River has overflowed its banks, prompting authorities to close several roads and cancel boat cruises (AP)

West of Paris, the Seine River burst its banks in some spots and spread to almost twice its usual breadth between the towns of Saint-Germain-en-Laye and Le Pecq. The area is well downstream from Paris.

Forecasters said the Seine levels should keep rising until the weekend. The river is expected to reach a peak last reached in June 2016, when authorities were forced to close several Parisian monuments including the Louvre museum.

Roads along the shores of the Seine remained closed on Wednesday as well as seven train stations alongside the river.

Press Association

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