Venice Canals Run Out of Water Two Months After Sever Floods

Published January 15th, 2020 - 07:02 GMT
A canal pictured during an exceptional low tide in Venice this, with waterways in the Italian city left almost dry. (Twitter)
A canal pictured during an exceptional low tide in Venice this, with waterways in the Italian city left almost dry. (Twitter)
Highlights
Venice experienced its highest water levels in more than 50 years in November

Low tides in Venice have left canals almost dry -  just two months after severe flooding flooded large parts of the Italian city, causing over a billion euros of damage. 

Venice experienced its highest water levels in more than 50 years in November, with several landmarks, including St Mark's Square and Saint Mark's Basilica, left underwater. 

Now, however, gondolas and boats have been left stranded in the city with its famous canals turned into dry, muddy trenches. 

The water peaked 45 centimeters below sea level in the afternoon making it impossible to navigate some of the Venice waterways. 

Photos shared on social media show despairing locals looking over the almost-empty canals, with vessels left to sit in the mud. 

Low tides are a rare though not unique phenomenon, with the water level prone to vary in the Italian city. 

The current situation is a stark contrast to the one from last November, however, where more than two thirds of Venice was underwater.  

The mayor of Venice says the city suffered damage 'in the hundreds of millions' of pounds after the 'apocalyptic' floods which he blamed on climate change.

The city's historic Saint Mark's Basilica 'suffered irreparable damage, especially in the lower section of the mosaics and tiling,' Venice Archbishop Francesco Moraglia told a news conference.

 

The church was flooded for just the sixth time in 1,200 years while the adjacent St Mark's Square was submerged by more than three feet of water - so deep that one man even swam across it.

The floods also brought misery to tourists and local residents - stranding boats, battering shops and hotels and and leaving many of the city's squares and alleyways deep underwater.

Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said the floods were 'the result of climate change' and warned of severe damage after the tide peaked at nearly 6ft 2in, second only to the record 6ft 5in set in 1966.

There was also anger among Venetians at the corruption which has caused delays to a long-planned flood protection barrier. 

One person, a man in his 70s, was electrocuted when water entered his home on the barrier island of Pellestrina. Another fatality was also reported in the city.

Luca Zaia, the premier of the Veneto region, told Italian media that the city was 'faced with total, apocalyptic devastation'.

'I'm not exaggerating - 80 per cent of the city is under water, the damage is unimaginable,' he said.  

This article has been adapted from its original source.


© Associated Newspapers Ltd.

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