UPDATE (3:20pm, 3 November 2019):
The storm warning has been upgraded to level red (maximum alert) until midnight tonight in ZONE C for those areas with medium to large drainage basins. The levels of local rivers and waterways are rising to alarming levels which led to the maximum alert being issued for potential flooding.
⚠️The Cinque Terre villages have small drainage basins so they remain on a level orange (mid-level) alert. However, the alert has been extended to 6pm this evening (at which time it’s expected to downgrade to yellow). Regardless, it is recommended that we stay indoors and out of the weather today.
A level orange weather alert has been issued for the Cinque Terre and surrounding areas starting tonight at midnight and lasting until tomorrow, November 3, at 3pm. This is the fourth weather alert in the span of a month and locals are feeling the strain of being in a constant state of hyper vigilance.
Meteorologists are expecting heavy rains, gusty winds, thunderstorms and rough seas during the alert.
Are you wondering why weather alerts and storm warnings are seemingly so frequent in our area? Check out this post.
Alerts are classified as either yellow, orange or red depending on the level of risk associated (yellow being the lowest on the scale and red the highest). As this is an orange alert, extra safety precautions within the Cinque Terre automatically go into effect. In the Comune di Riomaggiore (which encompasses the villages of Riomaggiore, Manarola, Volastra and Groppo) businesses located within potential flood zones are required to close, vehicles must be moved to areas not prone to flooding and organized tour groups are not permitted to visit the villages (amongst a plethora of other ordinances, but these are the main ones that affect those visiting our area). During the weather alert all hiking trails in the Cinque Terre National Park are officially closed.
If you are staying in the Cinque Terre we recommend buying food and snacks to tide you over as many businesses (bars, restaurants, shops, offices, etc.) are required to close. Only a select few businesses (with secondary emergency exits or outside of the flood zones) are allowed to remain open.
Here are the businesses that are permitted to stay open during a level orange weather alert for the villages of Riomaggiore and Manarola (but keep in mind that just because they can open doesn’t mean that they will open). Also, chances are that the few places open will be very busy and with potentially long lines.
Fuori Rotta (bar/café)
Coop 5Terre (grocery market, the one located higher up on via Colombo)
La Zorza (bar/café)
Dau Cila (restaurant)
A Pié de Mà (wine bar)*
Focacceria da Paolino (focaccia and snack bar, located in the marina)
Non Solo Pizza (street food)
Trattoria dal Billy (restaurant)
La Scogliera (restaurant)
Nessun Dorma (bar/café)*
*I think it’s extremely unlikely these businesses will be open during a weather alert as their seating is outdoors.
If you are staying in Corniglia, Vernazza or Monterosso speak with your host to see how you will be potentially affected by the weather alert.
At 3pm the weather alert is expected to downgrade to yellow, meaning that businesses are able to reopen.
What do I recommend? Use this time to catch up on sleep or some much-needed R&R. Delve into a new book or catch up on emails. If you decide to venture out, be prudent and prepared for heavy rains (and be ready to turn back should conditions worsen). Steer clear of low-lying areas that are prone to flooding. Don’t be alarmed, just be cautious.
P.S. You can monitor the status of the alerts on the ARPAL website (they are the government agency that issues them).