At the mercy of bad weather, the Italian regions of Emilia-Romagna and Marche, with the capitals Bologna and Ancona, are affected by a Mediterranean cyclone.
In Cesena, the situation is increasingly serious, La Repubblica newspaper reported on Tuesday evening, as many people have climbed to the roofs of their houses to escape the turbulent waters of the overflowing Savio river.
Several people swam, while others were rescued by neighbours.
The following video shows the dramatic rescue of a woman and her baby in Cesena.
About a thousand residents left their homes as a precaution with the help of firefighters and Civil Protection.
“The situation in the area is really serious. We have areas without electricity, even for a few hours, we have a flood situation not only of the Savio but also of the streams. We have very significant damage to things. At the moment , we all have to focus on keeping people safe. That’s our priority. We have to be patient, we have to resist, we have to help each other,” Cesena Mayor Enzo Latuca said via Facebook, making a first account of bad weather.
With the Savena river “already above the alert level and at risk of flooding”, the municipality of Bologna is ordering the evacuation of the basements and ground floors of buildings along certain streets of the city. A decision was made “to protect public safety”, he said.
But the municipality of Ravenna also ordered in the evening the immediate evacuation of all settlements and houses located near the banks of the Savio river, in the areas of Ronco and Montone.
Images of destruction also in Faenza, where “the Marcheno and Lamone rivers have overflowed and the water is entering the city”, warned the municipality late at night: “All citizens are asked to go to the highest floors, even on the rooftops.
Schools and highways closed, handbrake on trains
Schools will also remain closed tomorrow, Wednesday, in dozens of towns in Emilia-Romagna and the Marche region.
Due to severe weather and flooding, most rail and road links have been disrupted and the alert will remain ‘red’ for at least another 24 hours.
Mayors of areas affected by the weather have asked residents not to leave their homes until weather conditions improve.
In Imola, Civil Protection ordered the evacuation of the “Enzo e Dino Ferrari” track. The decision was taken as a precaution, given the flooding of the nearby Santerno River. Given the current conditions and the weather forecast, the Formula 1 Grand Prix, which will be held from May 19 to 21, is not in danger, reports la Repubblica.
The bad weather does not calm down
It is typical for 150 millimeters of rain to fall in 48 hours
According to the weather forecast, the heavy rains will continue until tomorrow evening.
Lorenzo Tedici, meteorologist of www.iLMeteo.it, indicates 2 main areas: the Lower Tyrrhenian Sea and Emilia-Romagna, where a lot of rain has already fallen and will continue.
“The soils are saturated, they no longer absorb rain and flash floods are a reality. The alert has been red for days in Italy, due to bad weather which has struck several times. Before there was little water with dramatic drought, now there is too much. Probably also because of climate change,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Tunisian cyclone, which hit Sicily and much of the south yesterday, has also reached the central-northern regions. From where a violent and deep cyclone with torrential winds and rains is recorded.
In the next few hours, it will rain non-stop in Emilia-Romagna as at the beginning of the month: similar rains are expected in duration and intensity. The bad weather will affect almost all of Italy, with less intensity only in Isola Maggiore and partly in the northwest.
Tomorrow, the Tunisian cyclone, formed between Algeria, Tunisia and Libya with storms and in the Sahara, will move towards the middle Adriatic and cause more bad weather: the heaviest rains are again expected in Romania , in the Marches and in the Tyrrhenian Sea.
On Thursday May 18, however, a slight improvement is expected with an intercyclonic phase, that is to say between two cyclones: the Tunisian cyclone will have moved away towards the Balkans, while a new Algerian cyclone will try to follow in the footsteps from the first.
Another 10 days of unstable and not hot weather are expected, according to the Italian meteorological service, the exact opposite of dry and hot May 2022.