Two people have drowned after their car became submerged due to heavy rains in Palermo, Sicily. The pair tried to shelter in an underpass, but the road quickly became blocked by the flooding, trapping them inside.
Mayor of Palermo, Leoluca Orlando said, “Over one metre of rain fell in Palermo in less than two hours. It is the most violent rain in the history of the city since 1970, equal to what we get in a year.”
Two children, the youngest 9 months, have been taken to hospital with hypothermia. They, too, remained stuck inside a car with their parents in an underpass.
Local authorities say there was not sufficient warning by weather forecasts. “Had a red alert been issued,” continued Orlando, “the usual procedures would have been activated that, despite the scale of the flooding, would have reduced the risks.”