Friday 28 February, 2020

Death toll from storm in Spain reaches 12, more missing

Authorities in Spain say the death toll from a storm that devastated the eastern part of the country this week has risen to at least 12 with rescuers searching for several missing persons.

Emergencies services for the northeastern Catalonia region said late Thursday that a fourth death caused by storm Gloria in the region had been confirmed. That took the national count to at least 12.

Rescuers were still searching Friday for three missing people in the Balearic Islands and for a fishing boat with six onboard that has gone missing off Spain's southern coast.

A British man and a Spaniard are feared to have been swept away by high waves on the island of Ibiza, authorities said. Another Spaniard is missing on the nearby island of Mallorca.

Government official Lucrecio Fernández said an overnight search by Spanish rescuers for the missing fishing boat is continuing with the assistance of a Moroccan frigate.

The storm has lasted for six days, accompanied by heavy winds, snow and hail. Weather authorities said the worst of it had passed on Wednesday, although some areas of southern Spain are under a weather warning for rain and winds.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez is meeting with his Cabinet on Friday to discuss aid for the hardest-hit regions.  

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