Bad weather in Majorca: Mallorca: Tidying up after the flash flood – Panorama

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By Martin DahmsMartin Dahms (mda) Profile 11. October 2018 – 16:00 o'clock Also a German vacationer pair drowned in the storm on Mallorca. Exhausted residents try to clean their houses from the brown mud. Could they have been warned?
After the storm in the east of Majorca: The residents clean their houses from the brown mud.

Photo: dpa

Palma – "We do not want photos," says a tired shop owner in Sant Llorenç des Cardassar to the reporter for the newspaper El País. "We want you to take a broom and sweep it." One and a half days after the cataclysmic cloudbursts in eastern Mallorca, some are fighting the trail of devastation caused by the mud from the nearby mountains during the night of Wednesday. Others are in search of images: photographers, cameramen, but also curious onlookers who can not resist the charm of the disaster.

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Some have used camera-mounted drones to capture a panoramic view of the ruined landscape. The Guardia Civil threatens to shoot them down: the airspace must remain free for helicopters. The help comes first.
On Thursday, two bodies are found 800 rescue workers are on Thursday in Sant Llorenç, in Artà, in S'Illot in use, including 80 soldiers from the Spanish mainland. Her most urgent task: the search for three missing persons, a five-year-old child from the area and a German couple of tourists, 61 and 63 years old. His car was found on the highway between Artà and Canyamel, empty.
On Thursday afternoon, then, the message that the bodies of a woman and a man had been found, which could be the missing Germans. The couple's last sign of life came on Tuesday night when a friend called from the car that they had trouble with the car. A dry creek bed turned into a raging torrent in minutes With the find from Thursday, at least twelve people were killed in the storm that hit the lovely area in the east of Mallorca like a biblical plague. A dry creek bed had transformed in a few minutes to a raging white water, full of mud, rocks and scrub. "You can not describe that without having experienced it," says the second mayor of Sant Llorenç, Antonia Bauza. All witnesses agree on the almost unbelievable suddenness of the catastrophe: "In two minutes: pam! We had no time for nothing, "says a survivor in El País. Up to one and a half meters in height, the flood of mud penetrated the houses on the edge of their path down the valley. Most people were able to flee to the higher floors of their homes just in time. The flood tore her furniture away, leaving only filth. He has to go now. People sweep and shovel and moan about their misfortune. There are about 200, the storm has taken their belongings. In the streets heavy equipment is on the way to set aside cars, refrigerators, household goods. The tidying up will take a long time. The amount of precipitation on Tuesday evening was extraordinary Could people have been warned? The state meteorological service Aemat says: no. "Torrential rain is not unusual on the Mediterranean," explains Aemet spokesman Rubén del Campo. But the magnitude of the rain on Tuesday night was extraordinary. The weather service had announced heavy rains in the Balearic Islands on Tuesday. But while some areas of Mallorca remained completely dry, the mass of water concentrated over the east of the island. That is not so precise predict. Sudden heavy rain has caused disasters in Spain over the past decades. In 1957, 81 people died in Valencia when the city river Turia overflowed its banks – after which it was transferred to an artificial bed that passed by the city. The man made share of these catastrophes is the irresponsibility with which long time homes have been built in areas that are potential floodplains. Many brook beds can be dry for years and, as now in the east of Majorca, in no time turn into torrential streams. Again, the danger was known, but the infrastructure is not prepared for the extraordinary, yet expectable event. The likelihood of such temporary deluge has increased with climate change.

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