Record high tides flood Venice

December 1st, 2008 - 7:31 pm ICT by IANS  

Venice, Dec 1 (DPA) Sea water encroached on large parts of Venice Monday amid warnings that the lagoon city could experience the greatest surge in high tide levels in almost 30 years.The municipality’s Centro Maree, or Tide Centre, which monitors water levels, said high tides have reached 144 cm above sea level - a situation that leaves some 96 percent of the lagoon city’s surface area covered by water.

By noon, according to the Centro forecast, the tide which is being pushed by strong winds, could reach as high as 166 cm above sea level, a figure last recorded in 1979.

Venice, which is built on hundreds of small islands, often experiences high water in autumn and winter causing floods to the city’s narrow alleyways and squares, including the famous St Mark’s.

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