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Published on Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Three-quarters of Venice under water as Italy hit by high winds and heavy rain

Venice experienced the worst flood for a decade yesterday when three-quarters of the city was under water.

Tourists and locals were forced to wade through the streets after an exceptional high tide caused by strong winds raised the water level by more than five feet.

Participants in the Venice marathon were forced to jog through ankle deep water.

Water-bus services were suspended, except to outlying islands, during the emergency.

Authorities said the flooding could have been prevented by a delayed scheme to erect underwater barriers, which has been hit by rising costs and corruption scandals.

The barriers would rise when the tide reaches 43 inches, which happens an average of four times a year, causing the city to flood. Yesterday's tide was the highest seen since December 2008.

Mayor of Venice Luigi Brugnaro has asked to talk to Italy's prime minster Giuseppe Conte to stress the urgent need to complete the barriers.

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