ROME -- Italian news reports say a violent rainstorm that flooded entire parts of the Mediterranean island of Sardinia has led to the deaths of at least nine people.

Olbia Mayor Gianni Giovanelli told Sky TG24 early Tuesday that the city had been destroyed by the "apocalyptic" storm, with several dead and several missing. Bridges were felled by swollen rivers and water levels reached 3 metres (yards) in some places.

Local newspaper L'Unione Sarda said the toll had reached nine dead, including one policeman helping to escort an ambulance when the car he was travelling in was involved in the collapse of a bridge in Dorgali. The city of Gallura was hardest hit with six dead, the newspaper reported, including three people whose car was swept away in the collapse of another bridge.