The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix which was planned for this weekend has been canceled, as local authorities agreed it was not safe to proceed citing flooding risks caused by severe weather.
Formula 1 took to Twitter to announce its decision of canceling Imola GP. In a statement shared on Twitter, it said “It would not be right to put further pressure on the local authorities and emergency services at this difficult time.”
The Formula 1 staff were also asked to vacate the site of the race on Tuesday where Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was scheduled, as a precautionary measure. However, it is very unlikely that Emilia Romagna GP will be scheduled back to later this year due to a packed calendar.
With this update, the schedule for 2023 looks to be trimmed by two rounds after the anticipated cancelation of the Chinese GP, which was scheduled for April 16 but lost due to Covid-19 restrictions. Prior to this, Australian GP was canceled in 2020 due to the Covid-19 outbreak, as the decision was made prior to free practice. This year’s season will now resume with Monaco GP, which is planned for the May 26-28 weekend.
According to Reuters, Fourteen rivers have been overflowing in the region, forcing people to displace from their habitat and climb onto the roof of their buildings to escape incoming floods. The Italian Department for Civil Protection in a tweet said “A total of 600 firefighters have been deployed from across Italy to assist with evacuations in the region after Italy’s longest river, the Po, broke its banks”.
Around eight people have been killed and over 5,000 residents in the northern region of Emilia Romagna are being forced to evacuate. The region which has been suffering a long-lasting drought, is under red alert due to alarming weather events.