Tragic toll rises to 6 as Spain grapples with devastating floods
In the aftermath of torrential rains that ravaged central Spain last weekend, rescue teams have recovered the lifeless body of a woman, pushing the death toll from the catastrophic floods to six individuals.
The discovery was made on Saturday, as a skilled sniffer dog from Spain’s Military Emergencies Unit located the victim’s remains approximately 50 meters (165 feet) away from the Vallehermoso stream, close to Valmojado in the central province of Toledo, according to Antonia Requena, a spokesperson for the Guardia Civil police force.
Speaking to reporters at the scene, Requena revealed, “It was hidden in undergrowth and mud.” Although the body has yet to be formally identified, authorities believe it belongs to a woman in her 50s who had been missing in the same area since severe rainstorms battered central Spain over the weekend, unleashing torrents that transformed streets into raging rivers and swept away roads and bridges. Her vehicle, in a distressed state, was discovered on Monday.
Earlier in the week, rescuers had already discovered the lifeless bodies of three men in the central province of Toledo. Additionally, on Friday, they located the remains of two men who had gone missing near the town of Aldea del Fresno, where the Alberche River overflowed on Sunday. Among the victims was a 47-year-old man whose vehicle was dragged into the river.
Emergency services managed to rescue his wife and daughter on Sunday night, while his 10-year-old son was miraculously found alive the following morning, having spent the night perched in a tree above the floodwaters.
The weekend storm, which swept across the entire country, brought travel to a grinding halt for tens of thousands of people on the cusp of the new school year. Key transportation links, including high-speed rail connections between the Spanish capital and the southwestern region of Andalusia, as well as the east coast region of Valencia, were forced to shut down. Furthermore, several Madrid metro stations were temporarily closed, causing widespread disruption.
In the backdrop of this tragic event, scientists continue to issue warnings about the intensification of extreme weather events like heatwaves and storms, attributing them to the effects of climate change.