By Humphrey Carter

THE gale force winds which began battering the Balearics on Monday but peaked over Monday night caused considerable damage and made driving extremely complicated yesterday morning.

The region remained on level one and level two alert for further gale force winds yesterday and the alerts remain in place today with the 70 to 80 kilometres per hour winds not expected to ease until tomorrow when temperatures are also forecast to begin returning to normal.

First thing yesterday, the sea front road in Portixol, on the outskirts of Palma, was closed off to traffic and pedestrians because of the strong winds and the large waves which were bursting over the break water and on to the road.

There was heavy sea front flooding in Santa Ponsa and the Port of Andratx, as usual, also took a beating from the gales with a number of small boats damaged and debris strewn across the sea front road and promenade.

Elsewhere in Majorca, the 112 emergency centre handled scores of calls and the emergency services were called out to 28 incidents. 12 were dealt with in Palma, six in Lluchmajor, two in Manacor, two in Marratxi, Alaro, Andratx and Banyalbufar and one in Calvia.

The majority of the incidents involved fallen trees and debris blown off terraces and building sites.
Minorca and Ibiza escaped relatively unscathed, although in Minorca the emergency services were called out to one incident and the heavy seas and gales played havoc with shipping with all of the Balearic fishing fleets forced to remain in port and they are expected to continue moored up in port today.


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