One dead, one missing amid floods in southern Spain

One dead, one missing amid floods in southern Spain
# 29 September 2012 00:26 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA. One woman has died and another person is missing after the heavy rainfall which has affected the Spanish province of Malaga on Friday, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

The victim died when the river Guadalahorce broke its banks close to the town of Alora, which is north of Malaga. A numberr of 12 other people, including the victim’s husband, were rescued by emergency services in the same incident.

The Spanish Military’s Emergency Unit has been called to Alora where there is widespread damage, while several other areas have been cut off and the president of the Deputation of Malaga has described seeing ’floating cars’ in some areas.

The missing person disappeared from the municipality of Pizarra and it thought to have been swept away by floodwaters caused by the torrential rain.

Civil authorities have reacted to the tragedy by deciding to evacuate around 5,000 people as a result of the heavy rainfall that is falling in the region in the south of the country.

The decision was confirmed by the Agriculture and Environment Spokesman for the Regional Authority of Andalusia Luis Planas.

Emergency services have decided to activate their emergency plan in response to the rainfall which is forecast to continue all Friday and into the coming weekend.

The Spanish Meteorological Agency AEMET has predicted storms with a possible rainfall of 120 liters per square meters over the coming 12 hours and has put the east of Malaga province on red alert for more possible flooding.

The nearby provinces of Granada, Sevilla, Almeria and Cordoba have also been placed on red alert over the extreme weather, with emergency services receiving almost 100 different calls in Almeria as a result of flooded basements and garages.

Meanwhile the A7 motorway was cut in the neighboring community of Murcia after part of the road was swept away by floodwaters.

About 60 emergency calls were also received in the morning in Granada which experiences rainfall of 60 liters per square meter in a short period of time.

The rain has finally put an end to one of the hottest and driest summers on record in Spain which saw average temperatures over 1.5 degrees centigrade higher than average, while rainfall is 37 percent down on average over the last 12 months. This created ideal conditions for the spread of wildfires with 170,000 hectares of countryside have been destroyed by over 4,000 different fires this summer.

One of the main fires was close to the tourist resort of Marbella, itself close to Malaga. Now the region is facing a totally different problem.