2013 Sardinia floods

2013 Sardinia floods
Date 17–19 November 2013
Location Olbia, Nuoro, Oristano, Gallura
Deaths 18 deaths and 3,000 homeless[1]
Property damage 1 billion ($4.968.9 billion USD)

The 2013 Sardinia floods took place in and around the Sardinian town of Olbia between 17 and 19 November 2013. They also affected other parts of northeastern Sardinia and killed at least 18 people.[2] Thousands of people were left homeless. The places which suffered the most damage were Olbia,[1] and in general the whole region of Gallura. The flood caused damages of over 1 billion euro.[3]


The flooding was associated with an extratropical cyclone in the western Mediterranean Basin in November 2013,[1] named Cyclone Cleopatra (also Ruven by the Free University of Berlin)[4] which developed slow-moving embedded thunderstorm complexes, as cold air flowing from the north entered the Mediterranean and interacted with warm moist air to the east.[5]

Continuous rain over two days resulted in the overflowing of the rivers in the northeastern part of Sardinia, flooding villages like Torpè and towns such as Olbia, Nuoro and Oristano.[6] The cyclone brought extremely heavy rain to the island of Sardinia as more than 440 mm (17.3 in) of rain fell in 90 minutes on the morning of 19 November, resulting in flooding and swollen rivers bursting their banks.[1] The area around the north-eastern city of Olbia has been affected the worst, where up to 3 m of water has left cars and homes submerged.[1]

Further afield, ferry services between Naples and the islands of Capri, Ischia and Procida were affected by gale force winds and heavy seas,[7] with bad weather spreading to Calabria and Campania on the Southern Italian mainland. As far north as Rome, authorities were monitoring the Tiber river.[7]


At least 18 people died as a result of the flooding in Sardinia.[1] Enrico Letta, the Italian prime minister, declared a state of emergency on the island, describing it as a "national tragedy", promising 20 million euro for the reconstruction.[1] As of 2014, the aforementioned funds have never been assigned.[8]

On November 19 the Parliament of the European Union observed a minute's silence in memory of the victims, anticipated from condolence by the president of European Commission José Manuel Durão Barroso.[9][10]

The date for the national day of mourning was established for November 22,[11] with the flag of Italy at half-mast.


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 "Sardinia hit by deadly Cyclone Cleopatra and floods". BBC News. 19 November 2013. Retrieved 19 November 2013.
  2. "Sardinia: Deadly Floods After 'Apocalyptic' Storm". Sky News. Retrieved 19 November 2013.
  3. http://archiviostorico.corriere.it/2013/novembre/26/Sardegna_stimati_danni_per_oltre_co_0_20131126_384f4fb4-5666-11e3-8656-1d64ae9d6504.shtml In Sardegna stimati danni per oltre un miliardo
  4. "Analysis". Wetterpate: Free University Berlin. 19 November 2013. Retrieved 19 November 2013.
  5. Widmer, Michèle (19 November 2013). "Die Sarden sollten sich für das Wochenende wappnen". Tages Anzeiger (in German). Retrieved 20 November 2013.
  6. "Esplora il significato del termine: Alluvione in Sardegna, è strage: 16morti" (in Italian). Corriere della Sera. 19 November 2013. Retrieved 19 November 2013.
  7. 1 2 "Search for victims as Sardinia floods kill 18". The Local Italy. 19 November 2013. Retrieved 19 November 2013.
  8. Ciclone Cleopatra, un anno dopo: i fondi mai arrivati
  9. http://liveblog.tg24.sky.it/Event/cronaca_maltempo_sardegna/96847504 Barroso, condoglianze a famiglie vittime
  10. http://tg24.sky.it/tg24/cronaca/2013/11/19/maltempo_sardegna_morti_dispersi_cappellacci.html Un minuto di silenzio a plenaria Strasburgo
  11. La Repubblica - Sardegna: Governo proclama per domani lutto nazionale

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