Roads in the southern Italian region of Puglia were covered by up to 15 centimetres of hail following the freak and violent event.
Snowploughs were brought out of storage to clear the roads, while in other areas heavy downpours swept away cars and flooded houses.
The unseasonable rain and hail flooded the countryside and destroyed crops, while also causing traffic disruptions.
The greatest damage was recorded in the towns of Monteroni, Galatina, Sternatia, Poggiardo, Surano, Ruffano, Parabita and Matino, in the province of Lecce, and in Torricella, Maruggio and Palagiano, in the Taranto area.Local farmers are voicing their concerns as the wild weather destroyed or severely damaged orchards, olive groves, vegetables, vineyards and wheat fields in a region that is based on agriculture.
“It looks like a damned season for farmers,” said Raffaele Carrabba, regional president of Puglia farmers association Cia Agricoltori Italiani della Puglia.