Torrential storms floods areas across Gib and Spain
Many areas of Gibraltar flooded on Sunday afternoon after showers and torrential storms hit the Rock with almost a month’s worth of rain in a matter of hours.
According to locally based Meteorologist Steph Ball a rainfall rate of 256mm/hr was recorded in Town.
Taking to social media Mrs Ball said: “The showers and torrential storms which moved in across the Rock bring us almost a month’s rain in the matter of just two or three hours.”
Additionally, she issued a severe weather warning which was subsequently distributed by the Gibraltar Government across their social media platforms.
The warning stated: “A band of heavy and occasionally thundery showers will continue to affect the Rock at times during the remainder of this afternoon, this evening and perhaps overnight.”
“Accumulations could exceed 50mm in a 6hr period leading to standing water on roads and localised flooding in prone areas. Extreme care should be taken with travelling conditions becoming difficult.”
Roads were flooded with drivers experiencing difficulty in certain areas such as the Sundial roundabout and Winston Churchill Avenue. At approximately 3.30pm traffic was crawling at around 15kmph through this area with wipers on full tilt.
Businesses experienced flooding right outside their door step, especially in the area of Irish Town where both Curry and Sushi and Patagonica had tables standing in a foot of water.
Patrons of Bistro Point at the University also told the Chronicle that the lift for the restaurant had collected water on the bottom and they were advised not to use it.
The Royal Gibraltar Police issued warnings telling people to only leave their homes if necessary with cars getting flooded on Rosia Road, Queensway and Prince Edwards Road.
Rosia Road was closed from Red sands Road to Boyd Street, north and south bound. Chatham Counterguard was also closed for a period of time.
The RGP also alerted people to manhole covers coming up from the road exposing the holes below.
FLOODING IN SPAIN
Dramatic scenes unfolded as a family had to be airlifted from their house just metres away from where a Gibraltarian group of friends were staying for a weekend break in Spain.
Kate Howarth was staying just by the riverside in Spain at Cañada del Real Tesoro a small village by Cortes de la Frontera when the downpour erupted.
She was on a weekend break away from Gibraltar with her friends, but when she woke up Sunday morning the area she had hiked through just a day before was flooded with metres of water.
Those staying in a house beside her had nowhere to run when the flood enveloped the only exit to their house leaving them stranded, calling for help from their terrace.
“On Sunday morning it all happened so quickly, we were watching the water levels rise quickly and stayed upstairs and the bottom floor was completed flooded,” Ms Howarth said.
“It was all a bit scary.”
She recounted how the neighbours were airlifted by a helicopter from the terrace of their house and some families lost all their livestock.
Although people had lost all their livelihood Ms Howarth was overwhelmed by the how kind and helpful they were towards her and her friends.
The neighbours and Guardia Civil ensured they were fine and helped them prepare for their journey back to Gibraltar.
“They were so amazing to help us even though they were facing their own tragedies and in return we want to help them to rebuild their lives,” Ms Howarth said.
Ms Howarth returned home safely on Sunday evening and is now looking how she can repay the people of Cañada del Real Tesoro for their kindness.