Friday, 20 October 2023, 11:44
Although it arrived later than expected, Storm Aline - the first of the autumn - fulfilled the predictions of Spain's Met Office, Aemet, with short, but intense, bursts of rain over Malaga province. The downpours were concentrated between 8pm and midnight, and saw totals of up to 50mm of rain falling in the Serranía de Ronda and areas inland of the westernmost Costa del Sol.
It is hoped the much-need rain will help alleviate the severe drought in the province. Rainfalls amounts recorded at the Majada de las Lomas rain gauge (Cortes de la Frontera) were 51mm; in the Genal valley, in Jubrique (47mm); and in Pujerra (45mm), from Wednesday night and Thursday.
There is also hope for the province's water reserves: the La Concepción reservoir (which supplies a large part of the Costa del Sol) received 12mm. In addition, there were notable amounts in El Torcal, of 20mm of rain in one hour; and in Ronda (17mm).
In the Axarquía, there were smaller but also noteworthy amounts, of around 20mm in Alfarnatejo; 14mm in the Benamargosa river and 10mm in La Viñuela area, the most affected by the water crisis.
Winds during Storm Aline saw a maximum speed of 129km/h registered in Alhaurín el Grande, in a private but certified station, belonging to the Meteoclimatic network. In Ronda winds of 55km/h were recorded, with 52km/h in Alameda, according to data collected by José Luis Escudero, head of the SUR weather blog. According to the local expert, the airport registered a new record for wind speed with one gust recorded at 98km/h; the previous one was from 29 October 1955, with 94km/h.
National incidents included the closure of the train line between Ciudad Real and Toledo, due to an obstruction. And 37 flights had to be diverted from Malaga Airport. At least a hundred other incidents affected the province, mainly in Ronda, on the coast and in Malaga city. Members of the provincial fire brigade dealt with some twenty events which were mainly due to the fall of trees, branches, fences, billboards, and power lines. As a precaution, from midday on Thursday the town councils of Malaga city, Benalmádena, Torremolinos, Fuengirola and Mijas ordered the closure of public parks due to the strong gusts of wind that were being recorded with the arrival of Aline.
Aemet said temperatures will tend to drop slightly on Friday with respect to Thursday, with highs of 23 C and lows of 18 C. On Saturday, the situation will be similar, again without rain, although night-time temperatures will continue to drop.
On Sunday rain will return, according to the Aemet forecasts. The probability of showers is very high throughout the province from midday onwards. Furthermore, this new episode will have a greater continuity than the previous one, as it could continue on Monday and even Tuesday. The director of the Malaga's weather centre said "the doors have opened" for the arrival of fronts.
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