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At Least Five Dead in Storms in Europe

At least five people died in a lightning strike, drowning, electrocution, high winds and the downing of a tree as storms struck northern Italy, Poland and Austria.

Lightning above a house and trees

Lightning killed several people in Europe on Friday

A 10-year-old boy died Friday in Turin, Italy, after being hit by lightning while a 37-year-old Italian man drowned off Genoa the same day when he was swamped by high waves in the Mediterranean.

A female German tourist, 27, was missing in the rough waters near Ventimiglia, west of Genoa, and other swimmers narrowly escaped drowning before being rescued nearby.

In Silesia in eastern Poland, a man died in Friday's storms when high winds caused widespread damage in the village of Kalina while another was electrocuted in the central province of Lodz after the wind blew down an electrical line.

A woman, 41, was killed near St Stefan, Austria, when she was hit by a falling tree while hiking. The group of hikers she was with took cover under the tree when it began to hail. It fell on her in front of her husband and daughter.

Severe storms were also reported in other parts of the southern Austrian state of Carinthia and the neighbouring south-eastern state of Styria.

Hail in Italy, Poland

In parts of northern Italy, hail as big as 4 centimeters (1.6 inches) was reported. Near Brescia, winds speeds reached up to 100 kilometers (62 miles) per hour, toppling trees and damaging roofs.

Downed trees blocked roads and train tracks in Silesia and central Poland, and the Polska Agencja Prasowa press agency reported that about 100 houses were damaged in Silesia alone.

Near Czestochowa, high winds sent a bus into a ditch, injuring two passengers, the agency said.

Tennis ball-sized hail also damaged many cars in Katowice and other parts of Silesia, television reports said.

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