The death toll of the floods that hit Italy’s Marche region has risen to ten, the authorities said Friday afternoon. As a result of the element, tunnels and roads were flooded. People are removing mud from the roads to free cars.
Heavy rains caused flooding in parts of Italy late Thursday evening. In just two or three hours, around 400 liters of water per square meter fell near the city of Ancona, located in the Marche region. Such heavy rain turned the streets into torrents. Tunnels and roads were flooded. One of the most damaged towns is the seaside Senigallia.
“It was like an earthquake,” said Ludovico Caverni, mayor of Serra Sant’Abbondio in the Marche region.
Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi said Friday afternoon that the number of people killed had risen to ten. He also informed about the search for four missing people.
Such downpours are called “water bombs”
In Cantiano, close to the neighboring Umbria region, residents were removing mud from the streets to free the trapped cars.
– It was an incredible amount of water, it brought chaos and death – this is how the situation was described by Fabrizio Curcio, the head of the Italian Civil Defense, after the crisis management meeting in Ancona. Such downpours are called “water bombs”.
“Nobody expected something like this”
During the night from Thursday to Friday, firefighters saved dozens of people who took refuge on the roofs of their houses and in trees. Several hundred people were evacuated in total.
Recordings published by the Italian fire brigade show rescuers on pontoons evacuating people in the coastal town of Senigallia, while others try to clear underground passages of debris.
Stefano Aguzzi, head of civil protection for the Marche region, said the downpour was much stronger than anticipated. “We got a rain alert, but no one expected something like this,” Aguzzi said.
Orange weather alerts were issued on Thursday and will be in effect for parts of central and southern Italy until Friday.
Climate change is to blame
Paola Pino d’Astore, an expert at the Italian Society of Environmental Geology (SIGEA), believes that the floods were caused by climate change and were not easy to predict.
“This is a foretaste of what our future will be like,” she said.
Main photo source: PAP / EPA / STEFANO SACCHETTONI