Storm Gloria: 27 provinces on alert in Spain as storm moves north

A fourth person has died and more than 200,000 residents left without power after Storm Gloria swept north into Catalonia wreaking havoc in its wake.

Storm Gloria: 27 provinces on alert in Spain as storm moves north
Waves crash over El Saler seafront in Valencia during Storm Gloria on Monday. Photo: AFP

Spain’s weather agency AEMET issued red alerts across the northeastern region which bore the brunt of the storm overnight and into Tuesday.

The storm, which has already caused damage further south along the Valencian coast arrived in Catalonia tipping 100 litres of water per square metre, which fell as heavy snow in the interior of the region.

Some 220,000 people were left without power in the Girona province after high winds brought down a  power cable and the AP7 – the main motorway from the border to Barcelona – was closed between Figueres and the frontier with France.




Schools across Catalonia closed and Spain’s traffic authorities, DGT, called for motorists to be extra vigilant.

Further south, Alicante-Elche airport reopened to air traffic this morning after more than 40 hours of closure due to unsafe weather conditions.

AEMET confirmed 170 flights affecting more than 20,000 passengers were due to either land or depart from Alicante airport on Tuesday and urged travellers to check their flight status with the airline before setting off for the airport.

In Teruel province some 8,000 homes were also left without power after wind and snow downed power cables.

While in Madrid, city authorities kept parks closed for the third day as high winds threatened to bring down trees and branches.




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Spain urges holidaymakers to head home early due to snow and strong wind warnings

Nine Spanish regions were put on alert on Tuesday for heavy snow, rain and strong winds, with the country's traffic authorities calling for people taking holidays this long weekend to head home early to avoid the worst of the bad weather.

Spain urges holidaymakers to head home early due to snow and strong wind warnings
Vehicles stuck in traffic due to a heavy snowfall near Burgos, northern Spain, in March 2021. Photo: Cesar Manso/AFP

Aragón, Castilla y León, Catalonia, Navarra and the Basque Country will be on orange alert from Tuesday for snow storms, while Asturias, Cantabria, La Rioja and La Comunidad Valenciana are on the less-severe yellow alert, Spain’s State Meteorological Agency (Aemet) announced.

A slight increase in temperatures will increase the risk of avalanches in the Pyrenees and the central Cantabrian mountain range.

Some roads in the north of the country are already being affected by snow and are being restricted to some traffic such as trucks and heavy vehicles.

Spain’s traffic authority (DGT) called on residents in the northern half of the country to return early from the puente (long weekend) marked by the public holidays of December 6 and 8, ahead of heavy snow forecast for Wednesday.

Of the 108 main roads affected by the heavy snow in Spain, almost half of them are in the northeastern region Aragón.

Aragón, Catalonia and Navarra are at risk of avalanches, according to data from Aemet, while a storm warning has been issued for the coastal areas of Galicia, Asturias, Cantabria, Catalonia and the Basque country.

Heavy rainfall is expected in Galicia, extending to Cantabria and the western Pyrenees.