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Freak low tides leave famous canals of Venice looking like ditches thanks to anticyclone wind system

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Where’s all the water gone-dola? Freak low tides leave famous canals of Venice looking like muddy ditches thanks to anticyclone wind system above the city

  • Severe tides have caused disruption to daily life and have killed countless fish
  • Officials said water levels have dropped to 26 inches below the average sea level

A freak low tide in the waterways of Venice has left the city’s world-famous canals looking like ditches, abandoning its gondolas and water taxis in a sea of mud.

The colourful boats sit unoccupied in their moorings as the city’s romantic waterways have been reduced to a squelching quagmire.

The severe tides have caused significant disruptions to daily life, according to Italian media.

Water buses and other vessels have been unable to navigate the city’s shallow waterways for days while water ambulances have been grounded and are unable to reach those who need them.

The low tide has also caused fish to die en masse and has revealed the ancient foundations of many buildings.

A freak low tide in the waterways of Venice has left the city's world-famous canals looking like ditches

A freak low tide in the waterways of Venice has left the city’s world-famous canals looking like ditches

boats sit unoccupied in their moorings as the city's waterways have been reduced to a quagmire

boats sit unoccupied in their moorings as the city’s waterways have been reduced to a quagmire

The freak water levels have also disrupted the city’s carnival, which has drawn more than 100,000 tourists to the city, now unable to navigate its historic canals.

Officials said water levels in Venice have dropped to 26 inches below the average sea level.

Alvise Papa of the Tide Forecasting Centre told local media: ‘It has been at least 15 years since we have recorded such a prolonged duration.’

In 2005, water levels remained at more than 20 inches below sea level for 48 hours.

Venice has long been a major tourist attraction due to the famous canals. Pictured: Before water levels decreased

The low tide has also caused fish to die en masse and has revealed the ancient foundations of many buildings

The low tide has also caused fish to die en masse and has revealed the ancient foundations of many buildings

The freak water levels have also disrupted the city's carnival, which attracts more than 100,000 tourists who are now unable to navigate its historic canals

The freak water levels have also disrupted the city’s carnival, which attracts more than 100,000 tourists who are now unable to navigate its historic canals

Officials said water levels in Venice have dropped to 26 inches below the average sea level

Officials said water levels in Venice have dropped to 26 inches below the average sea level

Weather experts blame the phenomenon on an anticyclone wind system that is temporarily stuck above the city.

The anticyclone lingering over northern Italy has also led to smog in the cities of the Po Valley and has put strain on the agricultural sector.

It is expected that the canals of Venice will remain dry until at least February 21.

Weather experts blame the lack of water in the canals on an anticyclone wind system that is temporarily stuck above the city

Weather experts blame the lack of water in the canals on an anticyclone wind system that is temporarily stuck above the city

It is expected that the canals of Venice will remain dry until at least February 21

It is expected that the canals of Venice will remain dry until at least February 21

Until the water levels have returned boats - which are the main modes of transport - cannot be used

Until the water levels have returned boats – which are the main modes of transport – cannot be used 

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