Residents in the Kamares area of Larnaca slammed the government on Tuesday over failing to fix their drainage problems after heavy rain once again flooded their community.
Strong winds also brought down power lines and left some communities without electricity while there were also reports of possible lightning strikes around the Limassol district.
Heavy rainstorms lashed the districts of Larnaca, Paphos, Limassol and the Famagusta district on early Tuesday morning and late Monday night resulting in the Fire Services and emergency services being called out to various communities after reports of flooding, trapped motorists and electricity blackouts.
While the fire services received eight calls for the entire Limassol district, three for the entire Famagusta district and four from the Paphos district, the Kamares community of Larnaca received a total of 80 calls alone.
Some residents complain that the bad drainage is due to poor building constructions in the area.
This, according to Akel Larnaca MP Andreas Ketiros, is down to the state failing to properly address known drainage problems in the area – especially after similar rainfall flooded the area last year.
“I actually drove out to Kamares because I had feared the worst when the rains started,” Ketiros told state radio.
“The government has not done enough to deal with the serious problem of the bad drainage. We had to go down there and, once again, assure the residents that we will help them and that we will fix the drains for the future.”
Speaking about the damage down in Kamares, he added: “There is a lot of destruction here – flooded homes, flooded basements, closed roads and trapped motorists. We have also had problems with areas without electricity.”
But it was just heavy rain that has been causing problems.
An official of the Electricity Authority of Cyprus (EAC) told state radio on Tuesday morning that strong winds brought down power lines and that various communities Pyrgos, Kofinou, Parekklisia, Akrotiri, Kolossi and Fasouri in Limassol had been hit by power cuts. There were also power cuts in the Famagusta district while an EAC power station caught fire and suffered extension damage.
Akrotiri, Fasouri and Polemidia were expected to have power again at around 10am.
Meanwhile, police are warning motorists to be extra careful on the roads especially around Kellaki were mud and rocks have spilled out onto the tarmac.
More rains are predicted later on Tuesday morning that sunshine is expected return in the afternoon.
Fire Services Spokesperson Andreas Kettis said, “We are aware of the problems in Kamares. Although we acknowledge that this is not the fault of the residents, we do still need to urge everyone to ensure that their drains are unblocked.”
He added: “We obviously welcome the rain but we prefer that it arrived in moderation and not a deluge.”
But Larnaca district officer Odysseas Hadjistephanou has dismissed claims that the situation in Kamares is dire accusing many of exaggerating the situation and saying that significant works had been done for the community – especially at the nearby river, where reports of running water breaching the barriers has been many times in the past.
He also said that only three basements were flooded, something local residents denied who in turn accused of him of being poorly informed.