Five dead as bad weather sweeps Italy

Rome, October 16, AZERTAC

Five people have died and hundreds have been evacuated from homes after severe storms, rainfall and floods swept across Italy, hitting southern regions particularly hard, according to ANSA.

In the area around Benevento in Campania, the most affected region, one 70-year-old woman was killed after being submerged in mud and water. A 70-year-old man in the same area of the country suffered a heart attack while he was cleaning up after floods.

In the central region of Abruzzo, a landslide killed a woman and a man was found dead in his cellar in the area around the town of L'Aquila. In Lazio, a man died in a road accident provoked by the severe weather.

"The city has been battered… the upper area by debris and landslides and the lower area by floods," Pepe said. "We are working above all to limit damage to people," he said.

Telecommunications services in the area have also been affected after two fibre-optic cables were damaged in a landslide and blackouts have been reported due to water damage.

Schools have been closed in several areas of the island.

In the southern Lazio province of Frosinone authorities were working to clear damage caused by flooding and landslides.

Also on Thursday a Ryanair flight from Bergamo to Cagliari returned to the northern city shortly after takeoff at 8.30 local time after being struck by lightning. No-one was hurt in the incident and the plane re-departed for its Sardinia destination three hours later.

Weather forecasters say more severe weather is likely to affect especially the south of the country on Friday.

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