A destructive tornado hit the Italian island of Pantelleria, south of Sicily, on September 10, 2021, causing severe damage to buildings and killing 2 people. Nine people were injured, of which 4 are in serious condition. The casualties include an off-duty firefighter who was driving his car when it was caught in the extreme winds.
The tornado ripped off roofs and overturned at least 6 cars. One building was hit by a car thrown in the air.1
According to testimonies, the tornado ripped down a coastal road in seconds.
"It was truly an apocalyptic scene," an unnamed paramedic at the site told the Italian newspaper la Repubblica.2
"At the moment there are two confirmed deaths, but searches are continuing, and we are making sure there are no missing. The tornado came from the sea and in a few seconds it ripped houses and cars that were traveling along the coastal road."
The Italian news agency ANSA said the dead were identified as island residents — a firefighter who is stationed on the island and an 86-year-old man.
The victims were in separate cars which were among some 10 vehicles that were flipped into the air by the force of the tornado, ANSA said. At least one car landed on its roof while another ended up on its smashed front end.3
Pantelleria tornado damage – September 2021. Credit: Vigili del Fuoco
1 Tornado hits Italy's Pantelleria island, killing two people – Reuters
2 Two killed as tornado rips through Italian island of Pantelleria – The Guardian
3 Tornado on southern Italian isle sweeps up cars, kills 2 – AP
Featured image: Pantelleria tornado damage – September 2021. Credit: Vigili del Fuoco
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