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Hurricane Leslie wreaks havoc as it rips through central Portugal

in Regional · 18-10-2018 09:57:00 · 0 Comments

A weakened hurricane Leslie, which was downgraded to a tropical storm just before it slammed into the coast of Portugal, ripped through the country’s central region on Saturday night leaving 28 people injured, 61 homeless and hundreds of thousands of homes without power.

Hurricane Leslie wreaks havoc as it rips through central Portugal

The worst of the weather bore down on Portugal on Saturday night, wreaking havoc as it uprooted trees, brought down power lines and smashed store windows with gusting winds and heavy rain.
Luis Belo Costa of Portugal’s National Civil Protection Agency said the storm forced more than 60 people to leave their homes and some 300,000 people suffered power cuts overnight.
He also confirmed the injury toll but added that none of the cases were life-threatening.
Leslie had been downgraded from a category one hurricane to a post-tropical cyclone with winds of up to 110 km/h by the time it made landfall on Portugal’s Atlantic coast late Saturday.
State broadcaster RTP said Leslie’s wind speeds reached 170 km/h in the coastal town of Figueira da Foz, about 200kms north of Lisbon.
Leslie carved its way into Portugal through Lisbon, tearing up everything in its path as it headed towards Coimbra, though its effects were felt as far north as Porto, where winds sent trees crashing onto cars and pavements. The Algarve narrowly dodged the wrath of Leslie.
Portugal’s weather service had issued red warnings for high winds or dangerous coastal conditions for 13 of its 18 mainland districts, including Lisbon.
More than 200 power lines were affected by the storm, according to reports citing power authority EDP. Some flights were also cancelled or delayed.
Leslie moved east on Sunday across the Iberian Peninsula to Spain, where authorities issued warnings for heavy rains and storm conditions for the northern part of the country.
Meanwhile the municipality of Soure in Coimbra district, one of the worst hit by the storm, declared a state of Public Calamity as 90 percent of homes in eight of Soure’s ten parishes were left without electricity.
In comments to Lusa News Agency, Soure Mayor Mário Jorge Nunes said that four families had to be relocated to relatives’ homes and one citizen was being encouraged to temporarily stay in a home or a hotel unit.
The mayor also explained that an event that was scheduled for Tuesday, in which more than 200 specialists in mental health were expected, as well as members of the Government and various associations, had to be cancelled.
“The big problem right now is electricity”, he said on Monday, adding “because EDP does not know when it will be able to resume supply.
“In 2013, in a somewhat similar situation, we were four days without electricity”, he recalled.
The south of France was also hard hit by Leslie, as the storm made its way north, with ten deaths and unprecedented flooding having been registered.

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Edition 1500
10 November 2018
Edition: 1500

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

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