Greece: Heavy rains bring flooding to Skiathos
Brits looking to get home from a Greek Island have seen dozens of flights cancelled as the region continues to be battered by severe storms and widespread flooding.
Police banned traffic on the island of Skiathos as record rainfall caused at least one death. It came as thigh-high torrents were spotted in the streets with cars swept away.
Storm Daniel has caused severe floods across Greece with streams overflowing their banks. Water has even reportedly swept cars into the sea.
British toursts on social media have been asking for help trying to leave Skiathos. The island is located just east of the Greek mainland.
READ MORE: UK tourists scrambling for flights as popular Greek island hammered by floods
Jet2 said all of its flights due to depart the island on Tuesday and Wednesday – five in total – had been axed. The airline said it was monitoring the forecast and will confirm new departure times as soon as possible.
Four flights scheduled from the UK to the Island on Wednesday have also been cancelled. On Monday, a flight from London Stansted to Skiathos was diverted to the mainland city of Thessaloniki because of the weather, where customers were provided with hotel accommodation until they can be returned to the UK.
Holidaymaker Emma Taylor, who has been stranded by the weather, told MailOnline: “This is a serious storm. Flooding in our hotel corridors, ceilings, power cuts, and we’re lucky as we’re up high at the Skiathos Palace, Koukounaries. Some guests have been asked to check out of their rooms.”
Another holidaymaker told the website: “Food supplies are running out at the hotel. No more can be supplied because the road by our hotel has collapsed. The rain has been heavy for around 36 hours. Our hotel is now homing local families who have lost theirs on the beach.”
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In a statement to affected customers posted on its website, Jet2 said: “We are sorry to inform you that due to the current and forecasted weather affecting the Island of Skiathos, we have delayed your flight. The heavy rainfall and thunderstorms are continuing to effect Skiathos, this is part of an adverse weather phenomenon named Storm Daniel. We are monitoring the forecast and will confirm your new departure time as soon as the forecast allows.
“We understand how frustrating this situation is, but please be assured that our dedicated UK-based Operations Team are working tirelessly to ensure we get you back to the UK, when it is safe to do so. We know that this is not the news you would like to hear, however, the safety and well-being of all our customers and crew is paramount. Whilst in destination, please continue to follow the advice of the Local Authority.”
Elsewhere in Greece, police banned traffic in the central town of Volos and the nearby mountain region of Pilion. The fire service said a man was killed near Volos when a wall buckled and fell on him.
Five people were reported missing, possibly swept away by floodwater. Authorities sent mobile phone alerts in several other areas of central Greece, the Sporades island chain and the island of Evia warning people to limit their movements outdoors.
Streams overflowed their banks and swept cars into the sea in the Pilion area, while rockfalls blocked roads, a small bridge was carried away and many areas suffered power cuts.
Greece’s minister for civil protection, Vassilis Kikilias, said the storms were forecast to ease after noon on Wednesday and urged people in afflicted areas to stay indoors.
The storm comes on the heels of major summer wildfires that hit Greece over the past few weeks, with some burning for more than a fortnight and destroying vast tracts of forest and farmland.
More than 20 people were killed in the fires.
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis blamed both the wildfires and storms on climate change, while conceding that his centre-right government “clearly didn’t manage things as well as we would have liked” on the wildfire front.
“I am afraid that the careless summers, as we knew them … will cease to exist and from now on the coming summers are likely to be ever more difficult,” he said on Tuesday.
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