F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Circuit Flooding Causes Evacuation
Preparations for this weekend’s Formula 1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix have been affected by severe rainfall affecting the Imola circuit and surrounding region.
Formula 1 has reconvened at Imola to commence a run of three races in as many weekends, with Monaco and Barcelona following in quick succession.
On Monday evening a red alert was issued by Italy’s Department of Civil Protection, warning of heavy rainfall, flooding and the risk of landslides through Tuesday and Wednesday. Emilia Romagna has been affected by heavy rain in recent weeks with two fatalities in the area earlier in the month.
As much as six inches of rainfall has been forecast through Tuesday and Wednesday morning.
Personnel in the Formula 1 paddock, setting up the standard infrastructure, were instructed to evacuate on Tuesday afternoon as a precaution.
F1 personnel evacuated from Imola over flooding concerns. https://t.co/6kC9FcCh9p pic.twitter.com/ctXApYxC4m
— Road & Track (@RoadandTrack) May 16, 2023
The situation at the circuit at Imola is accentuated by the presence of the Santerno river, located a short distance behind the paddock, which carries water from the Apennines towards the Adriatic Sea.
Water levels continued to rise throughout Tuesday afternoon and have not yet peaked.
Conditions are set to improve from Wednesday afternoon onwards though there remains a risk of showers influencing track activity throughout the grand prix weekend.
Spectator areas and car parks—the majority of which are on grass—are also likely to be adversely affected by the excessive rainfall. Teams and other personnel are traveling to the event as normal and no disruption is expected to the weekend’s on-track timetable.
The #F1 staff is currently being evacuated from the track❗️
The Santero river right next to the circuit is already flooding at a higher level than during the enormous rainfall at the beginning of May. And it will keep on raining at least 24 hours from now.#ImolaGP #Imola 🇮🇹 pic.twitter.com/Y4t2b9Jhgr
— Steffen Dietz (@sdietzf1) May 16, 2023