02/16/2010 - 17:54


 Anyone affected by the mudslides in the south? I see that more rain is forecast. Not sure that there's anything practical I can do to help and I'm glad that there doesn't appear to be any fatalties. Hope it's at an end.

In reply to by Postmac

  Ive just watched the youtube video of the mudslides....frightening!! It doesn't say where in southern Italy it happened. Im hoping nowhere near my little house(very selfish of me I know).

 What has been shown on TV is devastating. I feel very sorry for those people who are losing their homes. Fatalties have not been reported as they were able to evacuate those dangerous areas in time. The problem is that the weather patterns are still quite complicated and there could be more landslides.

Yesterday evening I stopped for some minutes and looked at the sea in Sampieri (off Scicli) In southern Sicily rain has caused troubles but they're not comparable to those happened in the northern part. Those aggressive waves soon made me think of the fear that victims must have felt! 

The landslides are in a place called Maierato, which is a town just north of Vibo Valentia in Calabria. Fortunately no-one was killed, but a few houses were lost. It appears that the abnormal volume of rain over the past two years has taken its toll on the land and whilst the town is fairly near the coast it sits about 300m up.

Landslides are very common in Calabria, where the problem is often componded by the houses being built without any regard at all for the geology of the area. It is not just sea-side houses that are built illegally, remember! Those of you familiar with the south of ITaly (and also the north at the moment!) will be aware that when the rain falls - it FALLS. If the land is not rock and on a steep slope, it is unfortunately quite inevitable that it will become saturated and start to slide. I understand that there have been several hundred land slides over the past few days - most of them being either small or in unpopulated places. It is the house building that is at fault here. One day, perhaps, the illegal buildings in dangerous areas will be removed - as they are doing in Spain at the moment. So, if you are buying, be very careful where you buy - don't just listen to the agent or builder!   Beery.