Venice was hit by the highest tide in more than 50 years late Tuesday. Tourists waded through flooded streets to seek shelter as a fierce wind whipped up waves in St. Mark's Square. City officials said the tide peaked at 187 cm (6ft 2ins) at 10.50 p.m. (2150 GMT) on Tuesday, just short of the record 194 cm set in 1966. Venice's mayor called the city a disaster zone on Wednesday after the second highest tide ever recorded swept through it overnight. Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said the situation was dramatic. "We ask the government to help us. The cost will be high. This is the result of climate change," he said on Twitter.