Paris museum remains closed to secure artworks from flooding

The level of the Seine river exceeded the 6-meter mark Friday, and on Saturday morning it hit its highest level since 1982, almost 4.5 meter above average, before it began a slow descent, according to a press release by The Musée du Louvre.

The Musée du Louvre is the world’s largest museum and a historic monument in Paris that houses famous artworks such as Leonardo Da Vinci’s portrait of Mona Lisa.

In accordance with the museum’s Flood Risk Prevention Plan, it will remain closed until June 7 to ensure the protection of the works located in flood zone, the release said.

The staff at the museum also have to monitor the Seine water daily, make special records of all works that are to be moved to upper floors, hold regular emergency drills with the staff, install systems that can pump up and slow the spread of water and create a plan for how to relocate the museum’s reserve collections to Liévin if necessary.

The emergency response protocol is to be implemented when the water rises above 5.08 meters and 72 hours before the water gets into the museum, according to the PPRI. When that level was reached Thursday, the Louvre moved the works to the upper floor and closed its doors to the public in order to safeguard the works.