In France, steady rains and melting snows have swollen numerous rivers to produce flooding in many parts of the country.
In France, steady rains and melting snows have swollen numerous rivers to produce flooding in many parts of the country. In Paris, the river Seine on Tuesday (13 February) was flowing more than four metres (50 inches) above its normal height, and rising towards danger level.
SYNOPSIS: The rising of the Seine has been slow and relentless.. covering parts of both the right and left banks but not managing to quench a noted Parisienne pastime.
Press reports on Monday (12 February) said the river's level had already risen by more than three and a half metres (44 inches), and it was expected to rise another half a metre (20 inches) during the following twenty-four hours.
Motor traffic, which is among the heaviest in the world, has already been disturbed. A central stretch of the right bank motorway has been closed, and vehicles cannot use the underpass along that bank. River traffic is also restricted, and motorists are forced to detour around other partly-submerged roadways.
With the river creeping steadily upwards, many barges have moored because they cannot pass under the series of bridges in Paris. All manner of traffic has been impeded, and fuel stations are submerged and out of action.
Many of France's major roads have been closed, including the Autoroute du Sud. The authorities advised holiday-makers who wanted to be back in Paris by midweek to leave their resorts immediately, and to check which roads back to the capital were still open.