Strong gusts of wind forced the suspension of many different festive events on Saturday, especially in southern towns of the province such as Elche, Torrevieja and Callosa de Segura
Firefighters from the Alicante Provincial Consortium were called out to more than 60 incidents on Saturday, many of the during the early hours, as a result of the wind, most of them related to the damage to fences, buildings, roofs and other rubble.
A majority of the incidents occurred from 2:00 in the morning, when the “dry blowout” generated strong gusts of wind, which had fatal consequences in the Valencian town of Cullera, while the thermometers shot up to almost 40 degrees around El Altet airport, and almost 42 in the city of Alicante by noon, setting a historical record.
According to sources from the Provincial Firefighters Consortium, the incidents were of a very diverse nature, but all were related to the wind: fallen branches or trees, collapsed aerials, traffic signals, awnings.
The towns most affected areas were in the southern regions of the province, the municipalities of Elche, Santa Pola, Torrevieja and Orihuela. There were calls also in areas to the north, in Muro and Alcoy; in the latter, a gust caused the roof of a terrace to fly off. Advertising hoardings were also torn down in Monforte del Cid.
In the southern regions, the gusts led to the suspension of different festive events. In Elche the municipal barracks and the gastronomic racó were vacated because of damage to the buildings. In Torrevieja the urban music festival “Crazy Urban Festival”, the Summer Parade and the festivals scheduled in La Mata and San Roque were all cancelled.
Also in Callosa de Segura there were damages to marquees and the parties that were being celebrated during the early hours were suspended, and then on Saturday the parade of giants and big heads was cancelled in Elche.
The wind also fuelled a fire that broke out early in the morning, around 6:45 a.m., in the vicinity of the Marjal de Pego-Oliva, in the municipality of the town of Marina Alta. The fire occurred, according to the Fire Department, in a crop area just outside the wetland.
A command unit, a heavy rural pump and a heavy mother pump, with a sergeant, a corporal and five firefighters from the Dénia park, attended the blaze.
In other areas gusts of wind reached almost 100 kilometers per hour in numerous points throughout the province.
Around noon, firefighters controlled a fire in Hondón de las Nieves, in Bayón, number 6, which started at 12:38 p.m. The fire affected 4 hectares of terraces and pine, although there were no casualties. Firefighters said that the entire area was very dry, managing to extinguish it at 18:39 in the evening.
Also in the early afternoon, members of the Provincial Consortium were despatched to Guardamar del Segura, where a fire, reported at 3:48 p.m., broke out in Calle Era de Madaleneta. The fire caught light in an area of vegetation with houses nearby , although firefighters sources indicated that there were no injuries.
Around 4:55 p.m. a fire also broke out in the La Hoya neighborhood, which joins Callosa and Cox , which spread to the Sierra de Callosa. As reported by provincial firefighters, the flames also affect a lighting tower located behind an abandoned building where homeless people usually live.
A dozen firemen were moved to the site with three water pumps and a command. Two units of forest firefighters with fire trucks and a helicopter also joined the operation .