13th December


SEVERE THUNDERSTORM – 13th December 2005

Malta once again bore the brunt of heavy rain and thunderstorms as roads flooded on Tuesday morning. Albeit being a public holiday, this morning’s heavy rain caught many people by surprise, bringing the traffic to a standstill in many areas. During the storm, the emergency number was down, the police said. A tornado was also reported at Marsascala in the early morning.

During the heavy downpour, which began just after 5am, an average of 55.1mm of rain fell in approximately four hours. In fact, the highest rainfall was at Msida with 91.5mm. Several roads were closed, as a number of areas known for flooding problems were temporarily cut off. These included Msida, Balzan, Birkirkara, Marsa and areas in the south of Malta.

Members of the Civil Protection Department and Armed Forces personnel braved the heavy rain to assist people, mainly motorists, who found themselves in difficulty whilst driving through flooded areas. An official spokesman for the Civil Protection Department said that a house in Gzira collapsed and a big wall in Valley Road was knocked down by flood waters. No one was injured.