Rain-swollen Seine burst its banks, engulfs quays

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Floodwaters are nearing their peak in Paris, with the rain-swollen Seine River engulfing scenic quays and threatening wine cellars and museum basements.

Unusually heavy rains have engorged the Seine and other rivers in the region, forcing a halt to all boat traffic in Paris, including tourist cruises.

Some quay-side restaurants were submerged, and roads and parks were closed — along with the bottom floor of the Louvre Museum. Meanwhile, fishermen took advantage of the rushing, boat-free river to look for lunch.

However, authorities said Saturday that the flooding won't be as bad as forecast earlier this week. The river is expected to peak in Paris on Sunday at 6 meters (about 20 feet) or less on the Austerlitz scale, well below the 8.6 meters hit in record floods in 1910.