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Italy still on high alert after deadly storms

Extensive damage reported across centre and south

03 December, 12:01
Italy still on high alert after deadly storms (ANSA) - Rome, December 3 - Central and southern areas of Italy were still on high alert Tuesday after storms ravaged the country on Monday, killing two people and prompting the evacuation of some 1,500 from the Adriatic city of Pescara.

Anna Maria Mancini, 57, drowned in her car Monday in an underpass that flooded during an extreme storm on the outskirts of Pescara, in the Abruzzo region. On the same day a 28-year-old man, Gianfranco Buonofiglio, in the southern Calabrian town of Rossano, near Cosenza, was killed by a rogue wave that swept him away while he was fishing.

His father-in-law Lorenzo Fusaro, 53, who was fishing with him, is being treated at a local hospital and is reportedly in shock but stable.

Also in the south, 200 people on Monday were evacuated around Matera while in the southeastern Puglia region a train conductor and an engineer were in serious condition after their train derailed amid gale winds and pouring rain. The railway line connecting Foggia with Barletta was reopened on Tuesday while a number of roads in Puglia, including parts of a state highway along the Ionian coast, remained closed.

The sun was shining Tuesday morning in Pescara but the southeastern city was still on high alert as its river risked overflowing, many streets were still closed to traffic and southern areas remained without electricity.

Schools were closed on Tuesday.

Meanwhile rainstorms continued to pound the southern Calabria region, with floods and landslides reported Tuesday across the Ionian coast.

Firefighters were also hard at work during the night between Monday and Tuesday in the southern city of Naples and the area around it where strong winds toppled trees and billboards and damaged buildings.

The floods come two weeks after 16 people were killed in a violent cyclone on the island of Sardinia, which displaced thousands and caused extensive damage.