STAFF REPORTER

PALMA/MADRID
A YELLOW alert weather warning, level zero (IG-0) was issued yesterday by Majorca's Emergency department due to strong winds battering the centre of the island.

Predictions of worsening conditions for the whole of the Balearics had first been made last Sunday when heavy seas were swelling in coastal waters due to abnormally strong winds. But as the winds shifted direction and spread from the sea to the land, the National Weather Agency (AEMET) saw fit to issue a yellow alert for the whole of Majorca. Winds gusting up to 80 kilometres per hour (kph) were expected across much of the interior and as high as 100 kph in the Serra Tramuntana.

The winds have in fact been affecting much of the country. AEMET reported yesterday that 10 coastal provinces around Spain were on a similar alert to the Balearics, including Asturias, Lugo, La Coruña, Pontevedra, Tarragona and Castellón. Conditions were at their worst along the coast of the Basque Country and Cantabria where an even higher risk Orange Alert (IG-1) had been declared. Northeast onshore winds in Guipuzcoa, Vizcaya and Cantabria were whipping up seas with waves between 4 and 5 metres high whilst dangerously strong gusts of 90 kph were sweeping down into the interior of the country.

AEMET issued general preventative advice to the public experiencing adverse weather conditions yesterday. In high winds, stay away from building sites where loose material may be blown from scaffolding, ensure that objects which might be carried away by the wind are removed from balconies and terraces, keep windows and shutters closed, don't walk along coastal paths and avoid driving whenever possible.

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