Northern Italy on flood alert as River Po rises

Parts of north-east Italy are on red alert again as another round of storms send rivers rising.

Northern Italy on flood alert as River Po rises
The flooded Po River in Carde, south of Turin, earlier this week. Photo: Marco Bertorello/AFP

The regions of Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy and Veneto were placed on maximum alert on Wednesday and into Thursday, days after torrential rains swept away part of a motorway bridge and left one person missing. 

In the latest wave of extreme weather to lash Italy in the past month, thunderstorms and fierce winds were forecast to strike much of the north, as well as stretches of the western coast.

The Po Valley is on flood watch after the river rose as much as seven metres above its usual height near the city of Cremona in the early hours of Wednesday. 

While the waters have slowly begun to recede, they remain a flood risk for at least 48 hours. Authorities are urging maximum caution around the river and surrounding floodplains.

Residents have also been warned to be on the look out for deer, foxes and wild boar that might be fleeing their usual habitat on the plains, especially when driving as animals may dart across roads.

READ ALSO: Floods in Italy: What to do when there's a weather warning

The swollen Po earlier this week. Photo: Marco Bertorello/AFP

Dozens of landslides were reported in the province of Piacenza, in the heart of the Po Valley, where several roads were blocked and houses cut off. 

Milan warned that the rivers Lambro and Seveso were also at risk of flooding. The city was forced to close a section of its ring road on Wednesday after the Lambro reached dangerous levels.

Venice was once again invaded by acqua alta, though the waters were not nearly so high as those that caused the city's worst flooding in 50 years earlier this month. The tide has been peaking at around 120 centimetres in recent days, compared to more than 180 cm two weeks ago.


Meanwhile authorities in northern Sardinia requested the declaration of a natural disaster after the Mannu River burst its banks for the first time in over 40 years. 

This November has proved one of the wettest in Italy for decades, with weeks of downpours accompanied by above average temperatures.

The storms are estimated to have done several billion euros' worth of damage to homes, heritage and agriculture. 

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.