By Andria Kades and Evie Andreou
Around 40 people called the fire services for help on Monday after Nicosia, Larnaca and Limassol were facing serious problems due the heavy rainfall that ended up flooding people’s homes, closing streets and trapping people in their vehicles.
The heavy rainfall affected mainly Dali, Lympia, Alambra, Kornos, Pyrga, Sia and Mosfiloti, in the Nicosia and Larnaca districts said the fire service spokesman Leonidas Leonidou while in Limassol, Yermasoyia was the most affected.
The fire service wrapped up the worst of the problems shortly after 8pm.
“The calls concerned mainly flooded basements and establishments. We had also a call about a car that went off course due to excessive water in the Pyrga-Sia road and fell into a ditch. Luckily no one was injured,” Leonidou said.
One elderly woman in Aradippou, aged 75 on Zinonos Street was completely helpless as she was in her wheelchair and trapped in her home that was flooding but was rescued after calling the emergency number for help.
She was taken away to a safe location, Leonidou said.
The fire service also had to bring in staff who were not on duty in order to respond to the calls for help, an announcement said.
In Limassol, a car parked in Yermasoyia was pushed out 30 metres into the sea but was eventually tied up and brought to shore by authorities. There were no passengers in the vehicle.
The public were irritated that authorities had not acted in advance to clear out drainage systems something Leonidou seemed to hint at.
“It seems as though the strong weather will continue and although all responsible authorities will have to take certain actions to reduce the consequences, citizens can also take certain measures so they won’t need to wait until they’re flooded call a service for help,” such as fixing any leaking pipes and blocking any points in their homes that were prone to let too much rain in, and clearing drains.
Meanwhile, police said that due to accumulation of water, the Nicosia- Limassol highway, near Kornos but also Parekklisia, and the Nicosia – Larnaca highway near Lympia, had become very dangerous.
On the highway near Lympia, there were rock and mud slides, while visibility was almost zero on the Nicosia-Larnaca highway – near Koshi. The road had become dangerous also due to water accumulation.
The Archangelos river in Aradippou, after some 25 to 30 years flooded due to the rains with water reaching the sewage channel in Livadia area.
In Limassol, the Kakopetria-Pedoulas road had also become dangerous, police said, due to rock slides and falling branches. Heavy rainfall and hailstorms were also affecting the Troodos area.
The Paramytha-Gerasa-Kalo Chorio Limassol road also had rock and mud slides while the Yermasoyia roundabout was temporarily closed to traffic due to accumulation of water.
Drivers are being urged to be very careful, keep a safe distance from vehicles ahead, keep low speed, and have their headlights and emergency lights on.
The weather forecast for Tuesday predicts unstable weather but not as severe as those seen on Monday.
Sunshine is expected to start off the day with showers and isolated storms in certain areas at midday and the afternoon however not as bad as Monday.
It is also expected to rain on Wednesday and Thursday.