Storm brought Malta to verge of
a national emergency
By Kurt Sansone
Mondays torrential rain created floods of a different kind at
the Civil Protection headquarters with emergency phone calls pouring
in by the minute. With almost 80 emergency rescue situations to deal
with, over 1,000 requests for bailing out flooded basements and homes
and major road arteries in Marsa, Zebbug, Burmarrad and Birkirkara closed
down, the country was on the brink of a national emergency.
Talking to The Malta Financial and Business Times yesterday, Civil Protection
head Peter Cordina said that had the rains not stopped the country would
have been dangerously close to a national emergency.
Although the weather offered little relent yesterday from the squalid
conditions of Monday, the rain was far less intense.
The morning showers created floods in Msida and Birkirkara. Gozo was
also heavily pelted by rain.
Mr Cordina said that the weather over the central Mediterranean was
still unstable and although it is unlikely that the island will experience
another downpour like Monday, more showers could be expected for today.
Mr Cordina also denied rumours making the rounds yesterday that four
people including two tourists had been found dead.
The Civil Protection Department, apart from deploying its own personnel
also co-ordinated the salvage efforts involving the armed forces, the
police and public works employees.
The heavy downpour on Monday, calculated at 100.6mm eclipsed the average
of 90.7mm that had been registered since the beginning of the year.
The rain caused untold damage to cars, homes, fields and roads. Qormi
mayor Roderick Galdes was yesterday quoted by di-ve.com as saying that
the estimated damage to his locality amounted to almost