MADRID — Madrid’s mayor on Thursday known as on the central authorities to declare Spain’s capital a catastrophe zone, warning that the harm attributable to final weekend’s snowstorm would value at the least 1.four 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 could be compensated as rapidly as potential.”
Madrid has been struggling to reopen its streets to visitors and clear the piles of snow, which lined town on Friday and Saturday. The storm, named Filomena, brought the heaviest snowfall Madrid has seen in nearly 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 will take a number of extra days to clear all of the roads, the duty slowed by freezing climate situations which can 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 20 years.
Madrid’s airport was closed for many of the weekend and solely resumed its regular flights schedule on Thursday, whereas faculties and sports activities facilities are set to stay closed till Monday.
The snowfall additionally destroyed parks across the capital, with harm recorded for 11,000 of the 17,000 bushes in Retiro Park, in keeping with native authorities.
Greater than 700 troopers have been despatched to assist metropolis companies clear the snow in Madrid and the neighboring area of Castilla-La Mancha. Regardless of their efforts, 127 roads remained totally closed to 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 for the reason that pandemic hit Spain final March. The nation’s Covid-19 death 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 employees have been pressured to work additional shifts to cowl for colleagues who couldn’t attain their hospitals due to the snow and ice.