Severe storms bring hail, flooding, strong winds to Italy

A series of storms brought hail, flooding and strong winds throughout Italy, local emergency officials said.

Italy's Civil Protection Department issued an orange alert for the
entire region of Calabria while a less severe yellow warning was issued
for Abruzzo, Calabria, Sicily and Lazio, as the wave of severe weather
swept across the country beginning Sunday.

Schools in Naples and other towns were ordered to remain closed Monday due to the alert.

A hailstorm struck Rome on Sunday, leaving roads covered with chunks of ice that disrupted local traffic, Euronews reported.

Heavy storms also caused some drivers in Rome to abandon their vehicles as they were surrounded by rain and hail.

The San Sebastiano Basilica also was flooded with more than a foot and a half of rainwater.

The Coldiretti agriculture association said the sudden hail storms
caused a "a calamity for Italian farming," possibly wiping out the
remains of the olive harvest in Lazio.

Northern Italy experienced strong winds that knocked down several trees
in Milan, while airports in Bologna experienced delays due to poor
flying conditions.

Sicily's eastern province of Catania also was affected by the storms,
bringing heavy rains and flooding to an area that had experienced flash
floods earlier in the week.

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