Three women drowned in floods as they remained trapped in their motor vehicle in an underpass in the Tuscan town on Prato on Monday night. The three Chinese women aged 42,50 and 24, all related, were victims of a malfunctioning drainage
system, probably unable to cope with the torrential rain which had been falling on the region.
A second vehicle was also found sunk in the underpass flood although no further bodies were found.
Fire brigade and emergency services have been working constantly to answer over 150 emergency calls since the bad weather began. Heavy rain has also been falling on parts of Liguria on Italy’s west coast. One man remains missing near Genova after his scooter and personal belongings were found under debris caused by flooding.
The city of Prato, 25 km north of Florence, is home to the largest Chinese community in Europe, working in over 3,000 clothing factories in the area. The Chinese immigrant situation and alleged hidden economy is expected to be part of the agenda for PM Wen Jiabao when he visits Rome later this month.