Madrid Mayor Says Snowstorm Prompted Almost $2 Billion in Injury

MADRID — Madrid’s mayor on Thursday known as on the central authorities to declare Spain’s capital a catastrophe zone, warning that the injury attributable to final weekend’s snowstorm would value not less than 1.4 billion euros, or $1.7 billion, to repair.

Mayor José Luis Martínez-Almeida advised a information convention that the catastrophe designation would launch emergency funds and be certain that “all of the individuals who have suffered damages will be compensated as shortly as potential.”

Madrid has been struggling to reopen its streets to site visitors and clear the piles of snow, which coated town on Friday and Saturday. The storm, named Filomena, introduced the heaviest snowfall Madrid has seen in virtually 50 years, dropping greater than a foot and a half of snow on town and surrounding areas.

On Thursday, metropolis corridor officers warned that it could take a number of extra days to clear all of the roads, the duty slowed by freezing climate situations which might be predicted to final till the center of subsequent week. Spain’s climate workplace forecast on Thursday that this 10-day interval of freezing temperatures could be the longest stretch of such climate to hit Madrid in twenty years.

Madrid’s airport was closed for a lot of the weekend and solely resumed its regular flights schedule on Thursday, whereas colleges and sports activities facilities are set to stay closed till Monday.

The snowfall additionally destroyed parks across the capital, with injury recorded for 11,000 of the 17,000 timber in Retiro Park, in accordance with native authorities.

Greater than 700 troopers have been despatched to assist metropolis providers clear the snow in Madrid and the neighboring area of Castilla-La Mancha. Regardless of their efforts, 127 roads remained absolutely closed to site visitors on Thursday.

The storm introduced Madrid to a standstill, disrupting transport throughout the nation, simply as Spain was getting into its third wave of the coronavirus pandemic. On Wednesday, Spain’s well being ministry recorded its highest variety of new circumstances because the pandemic hit Spain final March. The nation’s Covid-19 loss of life toll, greater than 53,000, is among the highest in Europe.

The snow additionally interrupted the nation’s vaccination marketing campaign, which began in late December. In Madrid, many well being care staff have been pressured to work additional shifts to cowl for colleagues who couldn’t attain their hospitals due to the snow and ice.

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