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A man removes mud from his house after a flood caused by torrential rains in Orihuela A man removes mud from his house after a flood caused by torrential rains in Orihuela 

Several killed in Spain's record flooding

Authorities say at least five people have died and 3,500 have been evacuated from their homes after flash floods struck south-eastern Spain. Rivers burst their banks in the area, causing massive damage.

By Stefan J. Bos

Vehicles swept away by rushing floodwaters in south-eastern Spain. Several regions of Valencia, Murcia and eastern Andalucía saw their most torrential rainfall on record. And a tornado in Alicante added to the misery.

Torrential rain also caused chaos on roads and public transport with two airports in Murcia and Almeria closing down, leaving travelers stranded.

Several railway lines were shut, and schools have been closed due to the severe weather conditions impacting nearly 700,000 students in Valencia alone.

And some areas were affected by power cuts. Amid the hardship, thousands of police, fire-fighters, and soldiers deployed in a rescue operation, some in boats and helicopters. They struggle to save lives.

One emergency worker recalled how a man was holding onto a traffic sign as he awaited rescue from the flooding.

Several killed

But help has come too late for several people. Among those who died was one man after getting stuck inside a flooded motorway tunnel.

Another man was reportedly found dead in the village of Redovan in Valencia after leaving his home on foot earlier on Friday.

Thousands of people have been evacuated.

The rain was forecast to ease on Saturday. And many Spanish people may pray that the exected weather change will happen as they seek an end to massive suffering. 

14 September 2019, 17:08