Over 30 dead in Italy’s week-long storms

Survivor Giuseppe Giordano (C) reacts outside the morgue in Casteldaccia. Six Italian regions remain on high alert for storms. (AFP)

Floods killed 12 people on the island of Sicily, including nine members of a single family, pushing Italy’s week-long storm toll beyond 30, rescuers said Sunday.

After a river burst its banks, the bodies of the family including children aged one, three and 15 were discovered in the town of Casteldaccia in the Palerno region.

Their house was near a small river which had burst its banks, rescue services said. The other victims’ ages ranged from 32 to 65. Three family members managed to escape, one by climbing a tree, the Agi news agency reported.

This picture taken on November 4, 2018 shows the flooded house where nine people of the same family died after a small river burst its banks in Casteldaccia near Palermo on the southern Italian island of Sicily. Rescue services said the bodies of the family, including children aged one, three and 15, were found in their house and a man was found separately in his car while two other people are missing, they said, as Italy grapples with fierce storms which have already claimed at least 20 lives this week.

This picture taken on November 4, 2018 shows the flooded house where nine people of the same family died after a small river burst its banks in Casteldaccia near Palermo on the southern Italian island of Sicily. Rescue services said the bodies of the family, including children aged one, three and 15, were found in their house and a man was found separately in his car while two other people are missing, they said, as Italy grapples with fierce storms which have already claimed at least 20 lives this week.

“I lost everything, I have nothing left, just my daughter,” one of the survivors, 35-year-old Giuseppe Giordano, told journalists.
His wife, two other children, his parents, brother, and sister all died, he said.

After flying over Casteldaccia on Sunday, Sicilian prosecutor Ambrogio Cartosio described scenes of “total disaster”.

Officials have opened an investigation to determine whether houses built near the river had complied with safety norms.
In a separate incident in Sicily, a 44-year-old man was found dead in his car near Vicari, also in the Palermo region.

He had been trying to reach a service station, where he was the manager, to help a colleague trapped there. A 20-year-old passenger in the car with him is still missing.

People pass on November 4, 2018 by damages on a flooded road near a house where nine people of the same family died after a small river burst its banks in Casteldaccia near Palermo on the southern Italian island of Sicily. Rescue services said the bodies of the family, including children aged one, three and 15, were found in their house and a man was found separately in his car while two other people are missing, they said, as Italy grapples with fierce storms which have already claimed at least 20 lives this week.

People pass on November 4, 2018 by damages on a flooded road near a house where nine people of the same family died after a small river burst its banks in Casteldaccia near Palermo on the southern Italian island of Sicily. Rescue services said the bodies of the family, including children aged one, three and 15, were found in their house and a man was found separately in his car while two other people are missing, they said, as Italy grapples with fierce storms which have already claimed at least 20 lives this week.

Violent winds and strong rain had killed at least 20 other people this week around Italy, especially in the northern parts and around Venice.

Two were reported killed on Friday, including a 62-year-old Germany tourist struck by lightning in Sardinia.

Six regions remain on high alert for storms.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:53 - GMT 06:53
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