More rain expected for flooded Italy

Nov. 12, 2012 at 3:18 PM
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ROME, Nov. 12 (UPI) -- Floodwaters that had covered 70 percent of Venice, Italy, receded to 5 percent Monday, but much of the country braced for more rain, officials said.

Floods and landslides struck Saturday and Sunday as rain pounded the country, the Italian news agency ANSA reported.

The flooding was blamed for one death in Tuscany. The man became trapped in his car when the road on which he was driving gave way, plunging him into high waters from the Chiarone River in the Tuscan province Grosseto.

Siena, Arezzo and Grosseto were on a high state of alert after nearly 8 inches of rain fell during the weekend and more than 3 inches were expected Monday. Authorities feared landslides and more flooding in the area.

Schools were closed and freeway entrances were shut off Monday in Orvieto where hospitals were inaccessible, officials said.

Authorities ordered evacuations and road closures in Perugia, and access to the Tiber River banks in Rome were closed off.

Veneto Gov. Luca Zaia said he would call for a state of emergency in the region around Venice as soon as he's received an assessment of the damage, ANSA reported.

"We have asked mayors in territories hit by the events of recent days to carefully monitor the damage," Zaia said. "As soon as timely responses are received from the administrations, the region will formally act, requesting a state of emergency [to be declared by central government]."

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