The River Seine is flooding.
The streets of Paris nearby the river are now canals of water and residents are fleeing their buildings.
As a precaution, local officials have also closed Paris’s Louvre museum and the Musée d’Orsay to save historic artworks from the rising floodwaters.
Staff are evacuating tens of thousands of “reserve” paintings and sculptures for underground store rooms.
The Independent reports that as part of its emergency plan, the Louvre has 72 hours to remove works in its underground reserve. The Musee d’Orsay has 96 hours. Both museums held drills this year to rehearse for a flow with floods.
Some are saying it’s the city’s worst flood in decades.
François Duquesne, head of Vigicrues, the agency which monitors water levels in France, said: “The Seine is still rising but we are far from the 8.5 metres recorded in 1910. We should see a rise to a peak of around 5.6 metres overnight.”
The flooding started after heavy rain led the River Seine to rise above its “preliminary” alert level of 5 metres on Thursday (local time).
The Seine floods the French capital on average once a century. The last time it occurred was in 1910 when large areas of the capital were flooded for 45 days.
Local weather forecasts suggest that the weather should improve over the weekend.
Here’s a look at the extent of the current flooding:
Eight days until the Euros kick off… parts of Paris under water. pic.twitter.com/t1Ldl7e10C
— Stuart Fraser (@stu_fraser) June 2, 2016
— Jim Roberts (@nycjim) June 1, 2016
excuse me, this is the only photo of the paris flooding you need to see pic.twitter.com/HI3467ngwq
— Meg Watson (@msmegwatson) June 2, 2016
Here’s a look at how it was back in 1910:
— Jim Roberts (@nycjim) June 2, 2016
Paris is flooding. But this pic from the 1924 Seine flood cannot be topped. pic.twitter.com/pRQ4PuVQUz
— Helen Kennedy (@HelenKennedy) June 2, 2016
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