Tuesday 12 December 2017

Four die in freak accidents as heavy storms sweep through Italy

Thunder and lightning storms. Stock photo
Thunder and lightning storms. Stock photo
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Heavy storms in Italy have led to the death of four people, following a prolonged heatwave across the country.

One man was killed on Saturday after being struck by lightning on Marmolada, the highest mountain of the Dolomites, according to reports from Italian news agency Ansa.

A man was killed when powerful winds uprooted a tree and fell on a festival at Marzia, in the Dolomites region.

Meanwhile, a 41-year-old Belgian tourist reportedly died after a tree fell down on his tent at a Rainbow Gathering counter-cultural supper camp in the Friuli region.

Another woman also died in the Cortina d'Ampezzo after a landslide buried her car, fire officials reported on Saturday.

Local rescue authorities have reported "many victims" over the weekend and hikers are being warned to take the weather alerts seriously.

The storms follow a prolonged heatwave across the country.

The relentless heatwave dubbed "Lucifer" which gripped parts of Europe this week has sent temperatures soaring to record highs, prompting authorities to issue severe weather warnings.

The extreme heat stifling Serbia, Romania, Croatia and parts of Spain, France and Italy has fuelled wildfires, damaged crops and strained energy and water supplies.

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