The authorities of the Italian region of Ravenna issued immediate evacuation orders today, Thursday, for three villages threatened with flooding, following torrential rains that killed nine people across the regions of northeastern Italy. Buses were sent to help evacuate people from Vilanova di Ravenna, Filetto and Roncalcici, after the Limoni river burst its banks. Nearly two dozen streams and rivers overflowed in the southeastern parts of the Emilia-Romagna region after heavy rains earlier this week flooded entire neighborhoods and farmland. More than 10,000 people have been evacuated from their homes and hundreds of landslides have been reported, according to district officials.
Emilia-Romagna Governor Stefano Bonaccini said: “With six months’ worth of rain falling in 36 hours, as record rains fell two weeks ago, no region can stand. We counted an estimated two billion dollars in damage. The earth no longer absorbs anything.” The Italian Armed Forces and the Coast Guard joined the emergency efforts, deploying helicopters to rescue people from their homes and rubber boats to reach homes besieged by water from all directions. While water levels have receded in some areas, residents have been busy cleaning houses and streets covered in thick mud and scattered rubble. A resident of Cesena, Eduardo Amadori, said: “I have lived here since 1979. I have witnessed floods, but I have never seen anything like this.”