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Civil Protection confirms false alarm, nobody missing as Malta hit by floods

Civil Protection confirm missing person report was false alarm after units dispatched to assist woman in Birkirkara.

Karl Stagno-Navarra
3 September 2012, 12:00am
Whirlwind seen between Qrendi and Siggiewi.
Additional reporting by Miriam Dalli.




Facebook pictures depicting Malta hit by torrential storms

Report of a missing man who found himself in difficulty because of today morning's torrential thunderstorm were a false alarm, the Civil Protection Department has confirmed.

CPD director Patrick Murgo said reports of a man who was seen getting out of his car when it stalled in the floodwater, actually concerned a woman who found herself in danger of being carried away by rainwater floods when she tried to enter her car.

"This woman managed to climb up on the roof of her vehicle. The CPD assisted her and returned her safely back home," Murgo told MaltaToday.

A clearance operation is underway in major roads, after a torrential downpour flooded roads. Murgo told this newspaper that the CPD was intervening in serious cases and where houses were in danger of flooding, which could lead to potential electrical faults and dangers.

The Meteorelogical Office has told MaltaToday that the Maltese islands are still surrounded by violent storms, with the possibility that these might return in the afternoon. At 8:45am, the weather had already cleared up.Meanwhile, the police urged motorists to exercise caution and to avoid flood prone areas. In a statement issued this morning, the police said the worst affected areas were the Birkirkara By-Pass, Valley Road Birkirkara, Iklin, Msida and Pieta'. 

Although the situation has improved, the police said the Msida area remains critical. The police said motorists should take all necessary precautions and advised the public to follow instructions given by its officers and other authorities.



Fallen trees and other debris have blocked roads, while police are calling on motorists to avoid Msida, B'Kara and Pieta' which are areas where flooding persists and roads are blocked. The authorities have urged motorists to follow the police's orders.

The Civil Protection Department has warned the public that the Maltese islands might be hit again by strong storms up to midday. "In case of such storms, the public is advised against passing through flood-prone areas," the CPD said.

In Birkirkara a number of cars were swept away by the flood waters, while damages were reported in Qormi, Marsascala and Balluta. Trees were also torn apart by the storm as ELC workers were sent out early in the morning to remove the debris.

 

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