Pedestrians hoisted umbrellas or dived for cover as the skies opened yesterday.

20-08-2013
Over thirty traffic accidents were reported yesterday as roads across Majorca became rivers of rain, with drivers, unaccustomed to driving in wet conditions, caught unawares and in many cases too close to the vehicle in front. Firemen were called out to pump out a number of flooded basements in Calvia while traffic police conducted traffic through some of the worst affected areas. Traffic police chiefs last night called on drivers to proceed with extreme caution over the next two days, with the region on storm and flood alert. The Balearics are on storm and flood alert with the Director General of Civil protection in Madrid yesterday placing the Balearics and Andalucia on a severe weather footing. In accordance with the alert, the emergency authorities and regional civil protection units will be on standby for the next two days, today and tomorrow. While everybody got caught in the steady downpour yesterday, heavy and at times torrential rain can be expected over the next 48 hours and there is a wide risk of flooding. The Meteorological Office reported yesterday that the current weather front over the Balearics could produce some 60 litres of rain per square metre in a period of just two hours in some parts of the islands. Tourists wandering around the sights of Palma yesterday were caught in the rain and many of the city residents were claiming that winter is finally here. But the downpour was welcomed by most people, glad to see some rain and many want to see plenty more over the winter to top up the reservoirs and perhaps bring an end to the drought. In preparation for the rains, local councils across the island have spent the past few weeks cleaning river beds and water runoff pipes in town centres in order to reduce the risk of flooding.

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