FORTY to forty-five litres per square metre of rainfall fell in the Balearic capital yesterday morning between 7pm and 9pm. Scores of trees and branches were brought down along with several lamposts. Although there was flooding in houses and businesses, no injuries were reported. Sources at the Balearic Meteorological Centre said that in two hours, 45 litres per square metre had been registed in Sa Cabaneta, 39 litres in s'Horta and more than 21 litres in the rainfall measuring point on the Paseo Marítimo in Palma. The deluge was at its heaviest in the Balearic capital, although 16 litres per square metre fell in Lluc and Porreres, 13 litres in Porto Colom and more than 7 litres in Inca and Pollensa. Reports indicated that rainfall would intensify through the course of yesterday morning, and a warning was given that 80 kilometre-an-hour winds would sweep across Majorca, and that coastal areas of Minorca would experience gusts of between 30 and 50 kilometres an hour. Firemen were called out on 15 occasions to clear trees that had fallen in Calviá and Palma, where they also had to help house and shop owners pump out water from their premises. The Emergency services which provide information by telephone (112), reported several lamposts down in the Balearic capital, one of them in calle Jaime III. At 8.34am, the storms caused a power failure on an electricity supply line in a rural area between Binissalem and Santa Eugenia. Eight hundred and twenty three clients were affected although supply was reconnected during the course of the morning. A spokesman for the electricity company, Gesa, confirmed that their organisation remains on alert due to bad weather forecasts. During the night, the storms caused failure in the safety systems of some electric lines, but they were repaired automatically, added the spokesman.
Due to the rough conditions, Al Sabini, a vessel belonging to the Balearia shipping company, cancelled its trip to Denia from the port in Palma, scheduled to depart at 8am, saying that an afternoon sailing may be possible. There was an accident at 5.13am on the motorway between Palma and Inca, close to the Alcampo commercial centre. Although the causes remain unknown, a 35-year old man was seriously injured and taken to Son Dureta hospital. The Port of Palma was also hit again with the port authority closing the port for two hours as the eye of the storm hit the island.
However, the good news is that the Civil Protection department have lifted the storm and torrential rain warning for Majorca and Minorca.
But, the threat of gale force winds does remain and yachtsmen are being asked to check the weather forecast regularly if planning on putting to sea today.
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