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Thursday, December 01, 2005

Tropical Storm Delta leaves 7 dead, 200,000 without power in the Canary Islands..


Tens of thousands remain without power in Tenerife

MADRID (AFP) - More than 200,000 people remained without electricity on the Spanish Canary Island of Tenerife after Tropical Storm Delta slammed the popular winter tourist spot, leaving at least seven dead before heading towards Morocco.
Regional justice minister Jose Miguel Ruano told reporters about 240,000 people had no power, most of them on Tenerife and the remainder on other islands in the chain, adding that it would be Friday before they were likely to be reconnected.
Ruano called on residents to save energy to allow what supplies were immediately available to be used where they were most needed.
"There will be cuts to allow essential public services, with hospitals, police, government offices and public buildings serving citizens' needs to take priority," he said.
Delta struck the archipelago with winds gusting at more than 150 kilometres (90 miles) per hour, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake Monday night before spinning off towards Morocco.
One man died Tuesday when he fell from his roof as he was trying to repair it.
The fatality took the casualty toll to seven with at least six sub-Saharan would-be immigrants having drowned in whipped-up seas Monday some 400 kilometres (250 miles) to the south of the islands.
Delta was the 25th storm of the year announced by the Miami-based National Hurricane Centre (NHC), which said that October's Vince was the first tropical storm on record to hit the Spanish coast.
Angel Riva, of Spain's National Meteorological Institute (INM), told AFP on Tuesday that "it's just not normal" that the storm should brew up out in the mid-Atlantic and then come east towards Europe.
Riva said an unusual pattern appeared to be emerging following Tropical Storm Vince hitting Spain last month as it left a trail of material damage.
"With Vince it was absolutely without precedent that it should come as far as the Spanish coast and now this year we have already had two phenomena of this type," he said.

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