Europe

Venice under water as deadly storms hit Italy

A man walks through garbage between two yachts after a storm hit the harbour and destroyed a part of the dam during the last night on October 30, 2018 Image copyright Getty Images

Italy has been battered by fierce winds and rain which have left 11 people dead in the west and north, while schools and tourist sites closed in several regions amid fears for people's safety.

Winds of up to 180km/h (110 mph) were reported, and two tornadoes ripped through the centre of the coastal town of Terracina, killing one person and leaving 10 others injured.

In the canal city of Venice, rising floodwaters overwhelmed many of its famed squares and walkways, with officials saying as much as 75% of the city is now submerged.

Venice's central St Mark's Square was closed on Monday afternoon, after the water level reached "acqua alta" (high water) of 156cm (5.1ft). It is the fourth highest level ever recorded.

Tourist in flooded water in Venice on 29 October 2018 Image copyright EPA

Some people took to the raised wooden walkways that are installed when there is flooding.

People walk across temporary walk ways in Venice on 29 October 2018 Image copyright Getty Images

Shopkeepers worked to try to keep the water away from their stock.

Shopkeeper empties water from his shop in Venice on 29 October 2018 Image copyright EPA

Beyond Venice in the north, it was a story of high winds, fallen trees and landslides.

In the wider Veneto region, a man was killed by a tree and a volunteer fireman died in the north-eastern border region of Alto Adige, also known as South Tyrol.

A 61-year-old man was found dead in a river near Belluno, Veneto, close to where his car had been discovered earlier.

A woman was killed when her home was hit by a landslide and a fisherman's body was found hours after he went to check on his boat on a lake in Trento. South of the beach resort of Rimini, a kite-surfer aged 63 died when he was hurled against rocks.

A view of a fallen tree over a car after strong winds hit Terracina, Italy, 29 October 2018 Image copyright EPA

Across Italy six people died on Monday and further deaths were confirmed on Tuesday.

Some of the worst conditions were reported on the west coast, particularly in Liguria in the north-west.

The outer breakwater wall in the fashionable port of Rapallo was destroyed as its reinforced concreted crumbled, causing damage to some of the prize yachts moored at the resort.

Firefighters had to go to the rescue of 19 people after they became trapped in Rapallo.

A view of a fallen tree at a street after strong winds hit Naples, southern Italy, 29 October 2018. Image copyright EPA

Further south, the coastal province of Grosseto said it had suffered a "calamitous" event, while trees fell down the capital Rome and further south in Naples, where a 21-year-old student was killed.

Two tornadoes tore roofs from buildings in Terracina south of Rome, as residents ran for cover.

Meteorologists are warning that the bad weather will continue. Transport and power supplies have been disrupted too.

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