At least two people have died after a cyclone battered the Italian island of Sicily and dropped a year’s worth of rainwater in just 48 hours, leaving many streets flooded.

After almost 500mm of rain fell in 48 hours, shocking footage shows roads submerged under flood water.

A red alert warning was issued for Calabria in southern Italy and the northern tip of Sicily.

At least two people have been killed by extreme weather so far. One victim, a 53-year-old man, died after being swept away in Gravina, north of Catania, reports news agency Ansa.

Dramatic video footage shared on social media showed how the flooding, caused by intense rainfall, had started to wash away cars down streets on Sicily

Flooding was caused in places such as Catania in Sicily after almost 500mm of rainwater fell in some places in 48 hours

Social media users shared dramatic video footage showing how flooding caused by intense rain had begun to wash cars down streets in Sicily

A car is seen almost entirely submerged beneath the flooding in Catania, Sicily, yesterday. The front of the motor can be seen to have been elevated by the water and pushed up against a brick wall after being carried down the road

Yesterday’s flooding in Catania, Sicily has submerged almost all of a car. After being dragged down the road, the water elevated the motor’s front and forced it against a brick wall.

Multiple vehicles on a street in Catania are seen to have been submerged and moved by the flooding, which was caused by extreme rainfall

Multiple vehicles are seen on a Catania street that were submerged and then moved by the flooding.

Volunteers discovered the body of the man beneath a car Tuesday, after torrential rainfalls had hit the area.

Workers found the body of a second victim on Sunday, a 67 year-old man. His 54-year old wife is still missing.

One video was shared on social media and showed Catania’s fish markets submerged in floodwater. Water also poured down from higher ground onto the buildings and shops flooding the market.

The city’s central Via Etnea had also been submerged by the rainwater, which sent  

Some roads on the Italian island were completely submerged by water following the intense rainfall, with some cars under threat of disappearing beneath the water

Some roads on the Italian island were completely submerged after heavy rains, and some cars were at risk of disappearing below the water.

In some places, it was impossible to even see the roads, with the flood water having fallen so fast. Parts of buildings were also covered up by the water

It was sometimes impossible to see the roads because of the rapid flood water. Parts of buildings were also flooded to the point that they were impossible to see.

People sought shelter inside shops and stores as they tried to keep off the streets and away from the flooding

As they tried not to flood the streets, people sought refuge inside shops and shops.

Rescue workers from the the Vigili del Fuoco firefighter corps are seen carrying an inflatable boat towards a flooded road as they attempted to help people trapped by the water

Rescue workers from the the Vigili del Fuoco firefighter corps are seen carrying an inflatable boat towards a flooded road as they attempted to help people trapped by the water

Alessia Gafuri, who filmed this clip, said: “Today my city was submerged in bad weather and it was difficult to leave the home.

“There were some people missing, who unfortunately lost the fight for their lives.”

Salvo Pogliese, the mayor of port city Catania,  has closed all schools and businesses and advised against going outside unless it is urgent.

He said, “It is obvious to all how the city faces a tragedy and almost unimaginable atmospheric phenomena.”

Business owners struggled to protect their properties from the rising water levels, with one (above) seen using a broom to push the water back outside

One business owner (above) used a broom to push water back outside to protect his property from rising water levels.

These two business workers used buckets to throw the water back onto the flooded street outside. One wore plastic bags over his feet as his shop floor was still covered in water

Two businessmen used buckets to pour the water onto the street. The water was still on the floor of his shop, so he wore plastic bags to protect his feet.

A rubbish collection vehicle is seen nudged up against a brick bridge in Catania after having been pushed down the flooded street by the water

After being pushed down by the water, a rubbish truck is seen being nudged up against a Catania brick bridge.

A car park is seen completely submerged, with vehicles inaccessible, in the Monte Po district of Catania

In Catania’s Monte Po district, a car park is completely submerged and vehicles are not accessible. 

“Nobody likes to close schools. But exceptional situations can be handled with extraordinary decisions.”

Italy’s national fire agency reported that 620 rescue missions were completed overnight by 186 firefighters. Yesterday, 300 rescues of cars in Catania flood waters were done by firefighters.

Another video shows a group of people saving a man who was trapped under his car on a Catania highway.

There are rows of abandoned cars visible, and in the middle is a group of people trying desperately to tip a submerged vehicle over.

A second later, a man is pulled out from underneath a car and taken to the doctor for a check-up.

Rescue workers are seen emerging from a flooded street carrying an inflatable boat as they attempted to save stranded motorists

Rescue workers can be seen emerging from a flood street with an inflatable boat carrying them as they try to save motorists trapped in the street.

A resident attempts to clean up some of the devastation left behind by the floodwater. He uses a broom to try and push the water and mud from his property

A resident attempts to clean up the floodwater-damaged property. He uses a broom in an attempt to move the water and mud off his property.

In the aftermath of the flooding, the damage and devastation left behind became clear in Catania

Catania saw the effects of the flooding and the devastation it left behind.

Many flights were diverted and ferry links between southern islands cancelled because of the storm.

Extreme weather is expected peak between Thursday-Friday, with residents being warned about being cautious.

Alessia stated, “Now the situation appears to have calmed. There is only strong winds.

“We fear more for Thursday, Friday, where civil protection has informed that a great storm is coming.

Climate change has been blamed by some for the heavy rainfalls and flooding. Rising temperatures are causing the Mediterranean Sea and oceans to heat up faster than they used to. This leads to more extreme weather and higher atmospheric humidity.

Cars along the Via Etnea are seen being carried down the street by the river of rainwater that fell so quickly in Catania

Cars along the Via Etnea are seen being carried down the street by the river of rainwater that fell so quickly in Catania

A residential street in Catania, Sicily, is seen completely covered in mud, left behind by the floodwaters that swept through the city

A Catania street, Sicily, is completely covered by mud after the floodwaters swept through the city.

The fish market, situated in Catania, was also devastated by the flooding, with debris left scattered about in the aftermath of the extreme weather

Catania’s fish markets were also affected by flooding. The debris was scattered after the extreme weather.

Francesca Tachhi wrote on Twitter: “There is massive flooding in Catania because of extreme rainfalls. These photos are horrifying, Italy, as with most Mediterranean countries is extremely vulnerable due to climate change. 

According to The Times the Mediterranean is 8C warmer than last year, according to The Times. 

Luca Mercalli is the head of the Italian meteorological Society. He claims that the cyclone in Sicily might even be upgraded to a Medicane’. However, he added that ‘we’re not sure yet.

The term “medicane” is derived from the term Mediterranean hurricane. However, it is not a hurricane and shares similar characteristics. 

The flooding occurs on the eve Cop26 climate talks in Glasgow which start this Sunday.