Flooding in Italy
|Type of posting||Posting date(EST):||Summary||Downloads|
|Summary of Impacts||5/18/2023 12:00:00 PM|
Summary of Impacts | Summary
Posting Date: May 18, 2023, 12:00:00 PM
Significant flooding is ongoing in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy, following two days of record setting rainfall. Thus far, eight people have been killed in the flooding, and several thousand more – primarily in the city of Ravenna and nearby towns – were evacuated from their homes. A widespread eight inches (~200 mm) of rain has fallen across the region over the last two days, with some areas seeing as much as 20 inches (~500 mm) during that period – the latter being half of the average annual rainfall for the region. In addition to the prodigious rainfall, the flooding situation has been exacerbated by previous drought conditions in the area. The dried-out soil in these areas will not absorb water as readily as more moist soil, thereby leading it to run over the surface and cause increased flooding impacts despite the recent lack or precipitation.
The Savio River near the city of Cesena is one of 21 rivers which have overtopped their banks during this event. Among the other basins impacted are the Idice, Samoggia, Marzeno, Voltre, Marecchia, Pisciatello, Ausa, and Montone rivers. Nearby, in Faenza and Forli, flood waters were reported to be washing over the tops of parked cars in the streets. A bridge near Bologna that connects Motta-Budrio and San Martino is reported to have collapsed on Tuesday evening. With many roads still flooded and more than 50,000 without electricity and 100,000 without cell phone service, rescue and recovery efforts in the main affected areas have been complicated and compromised up to now. Significant flooding has also been reported in the Marche region of Italy, east of Emilia-Romagna, as well as parts of northern Croatia and northwestern Bosnia, and landslides have been reported due to the system in Slovenia. The flooding has also caused the cancellation of this weekend’s scheduled Formula One race in the region.
While the most intense rainfall has subsided for the time being, new overflows are expected in the impacted areas as well as possible evacuations. New flood flows from upstream in the valley sections of the tributaries of the Reno River and other of Romagna's rivers will likely result in flood peaks above historical record through the early hours of May 18. Numerous and widespread disruptions are still possible in the central and eastern sectors of the region. In these areas, conditions favorable to the development of landslides by sliding and runoff along slopes, and to the aggravation of the very numerous landslides already activated as a result of the rainfall of the past few days, will remain. Wave and tidal values are expected to be below warning levels, however, localized flooding of rivers and canals at their mouths may still occur.
The Copernicus Emergency Flood service has been activated for this event and mapping of the event is anticipated in the coming days. Meanwhile, the Verisk ALERT and Flood teams are continuing to assess this event and will provide updates as warranted, though no specific plans are set at this time. Clients with questions regarding this event may contact their Verisk representative.