Sicily storms, floods take 12 lives

Nov 05, 2018, 11:44 IST | Agencies

State TV broadcaster RaiNews24 said the sole survivor of the flood that ravaged the home with water and mud was the owner, who had just stepped outside to walk the family dogs Saturday when the torrent hit

Sicily storms, floods take 12 lives
Survivor Giuseppe Giordano (C) reacts outside the morgue in Casteldaccia near Palermo on the island of Sicily. Pic/AFP

Storms lashing Sicily have killed at least 12 people with torrential floods, Italian authorities said on Sunday. Divers pulled out nine of those victims from a home flooded by a rapidly swelling river in the countryside near Palermo.

State TV broadcaster RaiNews24 said the sole survivor of the flood that ravaged the home with water and mud was the owner, who had just stepped outside to walk the family dogs Saturday when the torrent hit. News reports said the man at first clung to a tree, then ended up on the roof of a nearby house. He used his cellphone to call for help but it was too late for the others, who included a one-year-old baby, a three-year-old child and a teenager.

Elsewhere in Sicily, at least two other people were missing Sunday after floodwaters swept away their cars, including a doctor heading to the hospital in the hill town of Corleone.

Other storms had battered northern Italy earlier in the week, killing at least 15 people, uprooting millions of trees near Alpine valleys and leaving several Italian villages without electricity or road access for days. Italy's civil protection agency described the weather lashing the country as "one of the most complex meteorological situations of the past 50 to 60 years".

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