After a brief characterization of rapidly varying flows, a multi-resolution GPU-parallel numerical model implemented in CUDA/C++ for the solution of the 2D Shallow Water Equations is illustrated. Then, the activities developed with the aim of simulating two flooding events occurred in Emilia-Romagna (northern Italy) are detailed. The first event, happened on October 13th 2014 on the basin of the rivers Parma and Baganza, caused the flooding of wide districts of the town of Parma, with damages of several tens of millions of euros. The positive role of the river Parma flood detention reservoir during the event is also highlighted, as well as the possible consequences of the same event in the absence of the reservoir. The second event, occurred on September 13th 2015 on the river Nure (Piacenza), caused huge damages to the Farini village and to the Nure valley road infrastructure. The numerical simulations performed adopting the 2D high resolution numerical model allowed the correct reproduction of the real flooding events, with low computational time despite the high spatial resolution.
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