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France Braces for Floods

A man stands by the flooded banks of the river Seine in Paris on January 23, near the Eiffel tower as the Seine level has risen to a height of 4.57 metres, several metres higher than its normal level.A man stands by the flooded banks of the river Seine in Paris on January 23, near the Eiffel tower as the Seine level has risen to a height of 4.57 metres, several metres higher than its normal level.

France braced for floods on Tuesday as the Rhine threatened to overflow and the rapidly rising Seine forced Paris authorities to halt trains on a busy commuter line.

Heavy rains have lashed France for days, leaving 30 departments across the country on flood alert. Some towns and villages in the east are already inundated, leaving homes and shops filled with muddy water, AFP reported.

The Seine, running through the centre of the French capital, had already burst its banks in some places on Monday, growing into a powerful muddy torrent that has submerged riverside parks and footpaths.

It was set to reach 6.10 meters (20 feet) Friday—a peak last reached in 2016 when floods sent riverside museums scrambling to move artworks from their basements, which was the highest level since 1982.

Seven stations—including several that serve tourist attractions such as Notre Dame cathedral and the Musee d'Orsay—will be shut until at least Friday. Carmaker PSA meanwhile had to halt work at its factory in eastern Sochaux, which builds Citroen, Peugeot and Opus models, as one of its nearby subcontractors was hit by flooding.

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