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At least two dead as heavy flood wreaks havoc in France

(Xinhua) Updated: 2016-06-04 07:55 Comments

At least two dead as heavy flood wreaks havoc in France

Rescue workers from the French "Securite Civile" on small boats attend an evacuation operation for residents of the edge of the Seine River in Juvisy-sur-Orge, near Paris, France, June 3, 2016 after days of almost non-stop rain caused flooding in the country. [Photo/Agencies]

PARIS - The flood caused by torrential and prolonged rainfall has left at least two people dead in France where thousands have been evacuated and a state of emergency was declared.

In a statement, the French Interior Ministry on Friday said a 74-year-old man on horseback lost his life after being swept away by flood in Evry-Gregy-sur-Yerre, south of Paris.

According to the daily Le Parisien, the man had been trying to cross a flooded field.

Late on Wednesday, an 86-old-year woman was found dead in her house in the southwestern suburb of Paris.

Speaking to state-run France 2 TV, French Ecology Minister Segolene Royal said she feared more victims would be found as waters started to recede in the affected regions.

"What will be even more painful for the families who lost their homes, business leaders who lost their business, employees who are going to be laid off, is that water receding will be very slow. It will take several weeks," she added.

Parisians have been on high alert as the rising Seine River is expected to reach a peak of 6.50 meters on Friday evening, Royal said, adding that this was still well below the level on which it would pose a danger to inhabitants.

The river reached a record high of 8.6 metres in 1910, when thousands of Parisians had to flee flooded areas of the city

A continued rise of river could trigger the evacuation of residents in west Paris, according to the ministry.

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