72-YEAR-OLD WOMAN DIES OF COLD, CROPS WIPED OUT AND HOUSES ARE DAMAGED

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tenporal en andratx.michles.

01-02-2003
By Humphrey Carter
A 72-year-old woman died from the cold over the weekend after getting lost in Sant Llorenc while local councils inspected the damage caused by the gale force winds and scores of people enjoyed the mild weather and sunshine. However, yesterday's glorious day appears to have been the lull before the storm yet again. The Balearics is one of nine regions of Spain which were put back on weather alert by Civil protection bosses in Madrid last night. Further snow falls as low as last week are forecast as are a return of gale force winds. The met office said yesterday that this morning, Majorca will be hit by 80 kilometre per hour winds with 100 kilometre per hour gusts. The Balearic agricultural sector spent the weekend counting the costs of the fierce winds and freezing temperatures. In Majorca, an estimated 50 per cent of the potato crops was destroyed while in Minorca as much as 80 per cent of crops were wiped out according to the Farmers Union. A spokesperson for the union said that few farmers had ever seen such a strong and cold wind hit the island before. However, the Minorcan Insular Councillor for Agriculture did announce yesterday that compensation will be forthcoming. Teams of council engineers are also touring the towns worst hit assessing the extent of the damage to properties. Marinas and sea fronts suffered a severe hammering, a number of yachts were sunk by the high seas and in Colonia Sant Pere, the promenade, which was undergoing repair work, was severely damaged. Overturned heavy concrete benches along the sea front yesterday lay tossed about and over turned, providing a clear indication of just how strong the winds were. The outlook for the week is very unsettled. Temperatures will start to fall again from this afternoon and snow is forecast at 700 metres for Wednesday with a second wave of storms on Friday. Tragedy struck over the weekend when the body of 72-year-old Catalina Bauzá Soler was found dead near the village of Sant Llorenç near Manacor. Normally the victim and her husband would go for long walks in the area on Saturdays, but this week the husband decided not to go and the 72-year-old set off on her own, only to get lost. Police, family and friends searched for the woman all day Sunday and her body was eventually found by a neighbour trapped between some rocks. Sources for the emergency services believe she sought shelter from the cold in the rocks but died from exposure.

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