Powerful storm Alex causes severe floods in Italy and France; 2 dead, 24 missing

At least two people died and twenty-four were reported missing after a powerful storm hit southern France and north-western Italy.

The tropical storm dubbed, Alex, brought fierce winds and torrential rains causing severe floods.

Villages around the southern city of Nice suffered serious damage, it’s mayor called it the worst flooding in living memory.

In northern Italy several overflowing river banks flooded roads and bridges. A car swept away into a river in the Piedmont region.

In Piedmont, several villages were cut off after the rains made roads impassable. The situation there was described as “extremely critical” by officials.

Hundreds of aid workers have been sent to help rescue efforts in the cut-off villages.

The storm also affected the north-western regions of Lombardy and Liguria.

The city of Venice, which had been braced for high waters after suffering violent storms in August, was successfully protected by a flood barrier system recently declared fully operational.

In Italy 17 people are reportedly missing, while in neighbouring France the number stands at 8.

Several villages north of Nice, located in steep-sided valleys, have been cut off.

After flying over the worst-hit area by helicopter, Nice Mayor Chistian Estrosi told French news channel BFM: “The roads and about 100 houses were swept away or partially destroyed.”

The meteorological department said rain equivalent of nearly four months fell within 24 hours.