Heavy rainfall, flooding and chaos in eastern Spain

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chaos and flooding
ASSSA

An unusual and heavy rainfall has hit eastern Spain, with downpours and hailstorms reaching from Catalonia to Murcia. In some areas, up to 50 litres of water fell per square metre in just 20 minutes. The consequences were serious, with flooded streets, swept away cars, chaos and numerous fire brigade interventions.

Either the rain does not materialise or it falls in too large quantities at the same time. Every bit of water is welcome in the dry areas, but during floods such as those on Tuesday in Mallorca and on Wednesday in other parts of eastern Spain, much of the valuable water flows straight back into the sea. Later this week it will become clear how much these showers have contributed to Spain’s water reserves.

Severe flooding in Murcia

In the Murcia region, towns such as Molina de Segura were hit hard on Wednesday. Streets were flooded by water, making it impossible to drive. Furthermore, many residents became trapped and had to wait for the rain to stop. Local authorities reported that several motorists became trapped in their vehicles. The fire brigade rescued, among others, a woman and a child from a car that was swept away by the water. Weather service AEMET reported 43.8 litres of water per square metre in just 20 minutes. According to AEMET, this is a larger amount than the normal average amount of precipitation that the region receives in an entire summer.

In total, the emergency service 112 in Murcia reported 420 incidents related to the torrential rains. 139 calls were related to water accumulations and flooding and 82 were about obstacles on roads. Most reports came from the city of Murcia itself (222 incidents), followed by Las Torres de Cotillas (36) and Molina de Segura (21).

Problems in Alicante, Costa Blanca and Albacete

AEMET had already warned about it; The province of Alicante also experienced major problems due to the rainfall. The A-31 highway was closed between La Encina and Caudete due to the flooding. The capital Alicante and other coastal towns such as Orihuela, Torrevieja, Calpe and Gata de Gorgos were badly hit, as were inland areas such as Valle del Vinalopó.

In Albacete the heavy rain also caused a lot of inconvenience. It was impossible to drive through villages such as Navas de Abajo, and in Fuente-Álamo flooding caused problems on the roads. In addition to rain showers, heavy hail showers were also reported in Albacete.

Thunderstorms in Catalonia

Catalonia was the last region to be hit by the rainfall. In the province of Barcelona, ​​a train crashed into a fallen tree in Montesquiu, halting train traffic. Fortunately, the passengers and driver were not injured. In Olván, a car was swept away by the water, with the fire brigade deploying two helicopters and seven units to rescue the driver.

Historic storm causes flooding in Mallorca

Mallorca was hit hard by a historic storm on Tuesday. This led to the closure of Palma airport. The large amount of precipitation, which fell very locally in just a few hours, flooded several parts of the airport, forcing it to be shut down for an hour. At some points, 45 litres per square metre fell in an hour. Although there were no fatalities, there was significant property damage to restaurants and shops, just at the start of the tourist season.

Las fuertes lluvias en Baleares han provocado inundaciones en el aeropuerto de Palma y alrededores.

Tourists arriving at Palma airport on Tuesday were confronted with flooding and water damage. Large amounts of water poured from the roofs of terminal buildings, and several areas near the airport were flooded. Operations at the airport had to be halted, and heavy rains caused significant flight delays and cancellations.

Weather forecast

From Thursday the chance of rain will disappear along the Spanish east coast. There is only a chance of a few light showers in Alicante and Murcia on Sunday and heavier rainfall in the Balearic Islands that day.

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