Italy – Floods in Calabria After 200mm of Rain in 24 Hours, 500 Evacuated

At least 500 people, including locals and tourists, have been evacuated after major floods struck in Corigliano and Rossano Calabro in the province of Cosenza in Calabria. Many of those evacuated are being housed in a sports hall.

Roads have been blocked by flood water and debris, causing major transport problems. Local media are reporting that a street in the old town of Rossano Calabro has completely collapsed. The force of the flood water rushing through narrow streets has swept away cars and other vehicles.

The heavy rain has also caused landslides in the area. No deaths have been reported by official sources, although there have been some rumours on social media sites that several people are missing.

According to WMO figures, over 200 mm of rain fell in 24 hours between 11 and 12 August in Corigliano Calabro. MeteoWeb say that 160 mm of rain fell in the early hours of yesterday in Corigliano Calabro.

Italy’s civil protection agency (Protezione Civil) have issued high level (red) weather alerts for parts of Calabria. Mid level (orange) alerts have been issued for Sicily and northern eastern and southern Puglia.

State of Emergency

According to Italian news agency ANSA, Calabria Governor Mario Oliverio said earlier today that he will call a state of emergency and ask for government aid “given the dramatic situation” after a torrential downpour caused massive floods on the region’s coast in Cosenza and Catanzaro provinces.

“I remain close to and full of solidarity towards citizens affected by the storm,” the governor said after visiting the disaster sites along with local mayors and other officials.