One dead as Storm Ciara reaches Italy

One dead as Storm Ciara reaches Italy
Storm Ciara has brought strong winds and rough seas to Italy. File photo: Valery Hache/AFP
One person was killed as a violent storm battering western Europe reached Italy on Tuesday, bringing gale-force winds and rough seas.

A woman in her 70s died in Traona, between Lake Como and Sondrio in northern Italy, when she was struck by part of a roof blown away by fierce winds. 

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Gales of up to 200 kilometres an hour were reported in parts of the Alps between Monday and Tuesday, and 80 km/hour in the city of Turin.

Across northern and central Italy, emergency services were battling downed power lines, toppled trees and other dangerous debris, as well as wildfires fanned by the strong winds.

In the central Marche region the wind ripped off part of the roof at a warehouse storing Whirlpool appliances, while a bottled water plant in Piedmont remained closed after a mini tornado on Monday sent parts of the roof flying.

“The wind hasn't let up, it's impossible to reopen,” the CEO of the Sant'Anna plant in Vinadio, Alberto Bertone, told reporters on Tuesday.

Scores of people were left without power in Alto Adige (South Tyrol) after two large blackouts on Tuesday morning, one lasting around 30 minutes, that may have been linked to strong winds.  

Further south, gale warnings were in place along the coasts of Lazio, Campania, Calabria, Basilicata, Puglia, Molise and Abruzzo.

In Campania, some schools in the Salerno area were closed on Tuesday, while the city of Naples ordered public parks shut.

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Meanwhile the storm was accompanied by higher-than-average temperatures, with peaks of up to 25 degrees Celsius on the central Adriatic coast.

Highs of between 18 and 20 degrees were reported in parts of the Alps in Piedmont, where a spell of exceptionally warm weather has forced some mountain resorts in the Val di Susa to close their ski lifts.

Storm Ciara has killed at least seven people across Europe so far, battering Ireland and the UK first before sweeping across Sweden, France and Germany.


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