Worst storms in living memory hit expats and Spanish nationals alike

Published:  18 Sep at 9 AM
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Expats in Spain are starting the big cleanup after the biblical storms..

Last week’s terrifying storms and torrential rains hit all of Spain’s south-eastern region including popular expat and tourism destinations, with the death toll now standing at five. According to long-term residents, the annual weather phenomenon was the worst in living memory and has destroyed or damaged property, cars and even entire rural neighbourhoods. One victim died trapped in his car whilst driving through a tunnel in Almeria which became filled with torrents of water in just a few minutes. Two other occupants of the car were saved by rescuers, but the man could not be reached as the waters rose.

In Alicante, stranded drivers were pulled from their vehicles in flooded road tunnels, and another died as a torrent of water and mud flooded the A-92 Granada route. A 51-year old women and her brother were found to have died in their overturned car after it was washed away by flood waters south of Valencia, and a fifth fatality was reported as having been dragged under by the force of the floods after leaving his car. In coastal Cabo de Gata, some 60 holidaymakers were evacuated from their flooded campsite and Almeria’s airport was forced to close, as were all schools in the region.

Hard hit Alicante and the Costa Blanca region, home to many thousands of British expats, is still under threat, with the Segura river bursting its banks in Orhuela and causing the emergency evacuation of all residents in the low-lying part of the town. Expats living in Torrevieja were told to weigh down their cars as a protection from the torrents of rainwater, and popular beaches along the coastline have been washed away. On the major roads, drivers are seen sitting on their car roofs awaiting emergency rescue services. Across the entire region, expats and locals are starting the biggest clean-up of their lives.
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