People wait for buses under umbrellas / Salvador salas

Storm Efraín brings good news for drought-stricken Axarquía

On Thursday the regional government’s Hidrosur network rain gauges registered more than 40mm accumulated in 24 hours, with further rainfall expected today, Friday 16 December

Ignacio Lillo
IGNACIO LILLO MALAGA.

Storm Efraín, which has wreaked havoc in some parts of Malaga province, has nevertheless brought the best news of the year to the Axarquía region. On Thursday 15 December the regional government’s Hidrosur network rain gauges registered more than 40mm accumulated in 24 hours, with further rainfall expected today, Friday 16 December.

The rain gauge installed at the Benamargosa river, in the hamlet of Salto del Negro, recorded 41mm up to midday on Thursday, while the one at the La Viñuela reservoir recorded 37 and 30 in the village of Alfarnatejo.

It is still too early for the data to be reflected in the reservoir itself, but at 12pm on Thursday it had gone up to 10.3% of its capacity, with 17 cubic hectometres, which is 1.1% higher than it was registering at the end of November, when it reached its lowest point of 9.2% since 31 October 2008. The runoff is expected to increase the levels further in the coming days.

In the rest of the province, Los Reales de Sierra Bermeja (north of Estepona) has received the most water, with 42mm in 24 hours, followed by Pujerra in the Genal valley, with 35, and Ojén (near Marbella) , with over 31. In Malaga city the rains in the early hours of Thursday morning led to an accumulation of 20mm in the Paseo de la Farola (where the Hidrosur headquarters are located); with higher levels still in the Limonero and Casasola reservoir and in El Atabal.

La Concepción was at 34 Hm3; almost 60 per cent and the levels of the Guadalhorce and Guadalteba reservoirs are also improving, although to a lesser extent.

The overall balance of Malaga's water reserves is around 35.6 per cent, with 217.5 Hm3, almost 14 more than before the rains started. Taking into account an average consumption in the province of eight cubic hectometres per month, almost two months' worth of water has already flowed in.