Italy floods: 7 dead and several missing in Marche region

More than 400 mm of rain fell in a few hours.

At least seven people have died and several remain missing after flash floods hit Italy’s eastern Marche region on Thursday, civil protection authorities announced.

All of the deaths occurred in the province of Ancona, with four people killed in Ostra, one in Trecastelli, one in Barbara and one in Bettolelle, reports news agency ANSA.

Several people – including a child – were still unaccounted for in Barbara early on Friday, according to Italian media reports.

Civil protection chief Luigi d’Angelo described the sudden flooding as “an extremely intense event”, while Stefano Stefoni, regional civil protection director told ANSA: “About 420 mm of rain fell in two or three hours, half of what it rains in a year in the region.”

Streets in the village of Cantiano turned into rivers, as torrents of muddy water swept away cars and reached the first floor of houses, with the mayor appealing to residents to stay calm and remain indoors.

The flooding, part of a wave of violent storms hitting regions across Italy, has led to the closure of many schools in Le Marche on Friday.