Greece: Fierce storm causes blackouts and road havocTHE ASSOCIATED PRESS | February 23,2013ATHENS, Greece — Torrential rainfall in Greece’s capital Friday crippled traffic, inundated basements and streets, and was blamed for the death of woman whose car was trapped in floodwater, authorities said.
The overnight storm swept across greater Athens, flooding hundreds of homes, causing blackouts in parts of the city and forcing authorities to close major roads and a central subway station in Athens.
“We have many, many problems — it’s hard to know where to begin describing it,” Deputy Fire Chief Vassilis Papageorgiou said.
“We have more than 60 crews working to get people out of stranded vehicles.”
Police closed underpasses and highways in low-lying parts of the city after they were submerged, while parked cars were swept away by racing waters.
A 23-year-old woman who had been trapped in her car on a flooded suburban road died shortly after being pulled free by other motorists and taken to a hospital, police said. Doctors said a preliminary examination suggested she had died of heart failure.
The fire department said it received about 1,500 calls to pump out water in greater Athens. During five hours of heavy rainfall, more than 3.9 inches fell in some parts of the city — more than the monthly average of 1.9 inches.
An abandoned house collapsed in the city center, but no injuries were reported, while a factory north of Athens was seriously damaged when floodwater eroded the ground beneath the structure.
The capital’s tram system was also shut down for more than an hour, while urban rail schedules were disrupted after a tree fell onto the tracks. The rain also caused power cuts in parts of the city.
In Parliament, a worker clearing water from the roof of the main assembly hall during a session tripped and went through a glass skylight, but was pulled to safety by a policeman.
The accident occurred as Cabinet members were preparing to answer questions.
“The worker could have landed on our heads,” Sports Minister Yiannis Ioannidis said.MORE IN Wire NewsBEIRUT — Islamic State group fighters seized at least one cache of weapons airdropped by U.S. Full StorySAINT-JEAN-SUR-RICHELIEU, Quebec — A young convert to Islam who killed a Canadian soldier in a... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Acclaimed illusionist & escape artist Harry Houdini, performing in Montreal in 1926, is sucker-punched by a McGill University student. Houdini doesn't know he has peritonitis - the punches are possible factor in his Oct. 31 death.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Rutland Police Chief James Baker to resign from the force at the end of the year to take a job in Washington, D.C., jury remains out in teacher killing murder trial, Rec Dept. releases report on what's wrong with White's Pool.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Well diggers in Cardiff, New York, find what is thought to be the petrified body of a 10-foot-tall man, perfectly preserved after thousands of years, which becomes a popular roadside attraction until proven to be a fake.
- Pittsford Haunted House
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1720, 'Calico Jack' Rackham, Caribbean pirate and early feminist, known for recruiting women to his crew and for fabric decorating skills after creating 'Jolly Roger' flag, is captured by the British Royal Navy.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1307, King Phillip the Fair of France orders hundreds of Knights Templar rounded up and arrested, charged with heresy, tortured until they confess; on this day in 1917, thousands see miracle of Our Lady of Fatima.