Update 22 February: The Tenerife Cabildo has announced that all access roads to Teide are now open again. The only road now closed to traffic is the TF21 through the crater, and one carriage of the TF111 (Santa Cruz-La Cuesta via Los Campitos) is closed but the road remains passable. C24H
Update 21 February: Aemet will lift the concurrent Yellow and Orange alerts for torrential rain and very high winds at 6pm and midnight respectively. The forecast is for continued winds of up to 75 km per hour around the entire coastline, but this is not subject to an alert. C7
Update 20 February 10pm: Tenerife was on alert for one of the fronts of the storm that has just devastated Madeira, which bore the brunt of it. The island is just 400km away from the Canaries. Satellite images now show the storm moving northeast and skirting past the Canaries. Aemet is maintaining the Orange Alert for the moment, but it appears that the worst of the storm has just missed the islands. Madeira, meanwhile, is counting a death toll now of apparently at least 32, with tens of others in hospital. LO
Here is Portuguese TV’s report on the storm that so narrowly missed Tenerife:
Update 20 February 10am: Once again Tenerife is in for some bad weather, with Aemet applying an Orange Alert from mid-day today. Cloud cover is expected to increase throughout the day, with rain and winds of up to 120 km expected, and given that they are referring to winds and not gusts, this is classed as hurricane force according to the Beaufort Scale. This is the same front that is now approaching us from neighbouring Madeira, where it has caused chaos and resulted in at least 30 deaths, as reported in the BBC. C24H, LO
Update 19 February: The closed La Orotava, La Esperanza and Vilaflor access roads to Teide will not be reopened until at least after the weekend, not least because there is a new Yellow Alert for rain and winds from Saturday night throughout Sunday. This is not expected to be as extreme as the last two alerted storms over recent weeks, the second of which has only just cleared the island.
Meanwhile, the clear up continues, and it appears that the biggest loser over the last few days has been agriculture, with an estimated 3 million Euros worth of damage caused to banana and tomato stocks and greenhouses, and the municipalities of Guía de Isora and Santiago del Teide reporting the loss of almost their entire tomato harvest. A saving grace is that Teide is now at its most beautiful, with the increasingly rare and most picturesque sight of its completely snow-covered peak towering above the pine trees of the Corona Forestal. C24H (roads), C7, C24H(agriculture)
Update 18 February 10pm: At last, the alert has been lifted as the storm clears the islands. El Dia
The Dept of Education has announced that schools will be open again tomorrow throughout the Canaries, with the exception of those in the municipality of Granadilla de Abona due to lack of electric supply. There will also be no classes in the infants and primary CEIP in Agache, in El Escobonal-Güímar, due to damage caused by the storm. C7
Update 18 February 11am: Today’s forecast is for strong gusts of wind and occasionally torrential downpours but generally and slowly beginning to clear towards the afternoon and evening.
The La Orotava, La Esperanza and Vilaflor access roads to Teide are all closed.
Tens of thousands had been left from late yesterday without electricity, particularly on the east coast, but Tenerife President Ricardo Melchior said that the service was now 90% restored, with the number of those without power now being down to around 3,000, mainly in Granadilla, Vilaflor and Fasnia.
The public is no longer being asked to remain indoors, but is being strongly advised to travel with safety uppermost in mind while the Orange Alert lasts.
Meanwhile, Guía de Isora seems to be one of the most affected of the southern municipalities, with Playa San Juan a disaster site, with cars dragged along by the force of the river raging down the barranco, and swept in a pile onto the beach, which itself has been all but washed away. The pictures below attempt to show the scale of the damage to this picturesque little west coast town. DA
Update 17 February 8pm: The Tenerife Cabildo’s Co-ordinator General of Mobility and Security, Manuel Ortega, has asked the public to stay indoors because a second front of the storm will sweep the island from west to east for the next four to six hours. Sr Ortega said it was difficult to be precise without radar, but it appeared that the second front will be stronger than that which has just cleared Tenerife. Up to 45 litres of rain per square metre per hour are anticipated, and the Emergency Cabinet has been called under the conditions of the Emergency Plan which was activated yesterday. C7
In addition, the Canarian Department announced an hour ago that all classes will be suspended tomorrow, Thursday, in all schools, due to Aemet’s forecasted development of the storm. Universities, being autonomous, will advise individually as to whether they will be open or not. C7
Update 17 February 2.30pm: The Orange Alert remains in place for today and for the whole of tomorrow as well, but Aemet says this is a rapidly moving “borrasca” so it should pass pretty quickly from east to west. Having reached the western islands on time last night, it is now over Tenerife, and should clear us by the end of tomorrow.
The roads are in a treacherous state, with the TF1 southbound having been blocked in three places, at kms 14, 17.5 and 29, and the TF-82 Guía de Isora road blocked at Armeñime. Both have now been reopened. The La Esperanza and La Orotava roads up Teide, however, are set to be closed at any moment because of hailstorms.
The Cabildo repeated requests to the public to avoid any unnecessary journeys, both to avoid accidents, and to make the task of those clearing the roads easier. In particular, motorists were asked to avoid the national park. DA
Meanwhile, the Fiestas Councillor of Santa Cruz Ayuntamiento has suspended all Carnaval activities today as a result of the Orange Alerts for bad weather, and in particular, the Cabildo’s Emergency Plan. The suspension will affect the Entierro de la Sardina (see HERE), which will now take place on Friday. C7
Also, all classes and extra-curricular activites have been suspended in all centres throughout the Canaries as a result of the current storms. The Canarian Dept of Education issued the notice for all activities this afternoon and evening in all public and state-subsidised private schools in the islands. C7
Below is the effect of one particular downpour yesterday on the new Guaza roundabout and underpass. El Dia
Update 16 February, 5.30pm: The Tenerife Cabildo has activated the island’s Emergency Plan for gales, rains and wild seas. The Emergency Plan allows for an emergency cabinet and island-wide integrated response to the anticipated terrible weather conditions. Torrential downpours are expected, and winds gusting up to 120 km per hour, a rate already registered on the Teide peaks, but now expected in the La Orotava and Vilaflor areas. The rains are expected to start tonight, with up to 120 litres per square metre at mid-altitude and altitude, particularly in the south, west and north of the island. LO
Update 16 February 2.30pm: It’s not getting any better … in fact it’s getting worse.
Tenerife is currently under Orange Alert for strong winds until midnight tonight, but now another Orange Alert has been issued for tomorrow for torrential rain. Aemet’s website HERE shows the alert continuing into Thursday. C24H
In view of these Alerts for gales today and torrential rain tomorrow, the Tenerife Cabildo has recommended that the public avoids unnecessary journeys, and in particular that people should stay away from the Teide national park due to the extreme gusts of winds, which have been recorded up to 120 km per hour. C24H
The TF21 (Chio-La Orotava road) through the crater remains closed from the rockfalls caused by the last storm at the beginning of February.
Update 14 February: Aemet has amplified Tenerife’s alert to Orange for heavy showers and high winds from midday today to last until Wednesday. Winds of up to 95 kms per hour are expected at altitude, especially affecting La Orotava and Vilaflor. C7, RTVC
Original post 13 February: The Met Office, Aemet, has issued an Orange Alert for Tenerife for winds of up to 90 km per hour at altitude in Tenerife. The alert will last from 6am tomorrow morning (Saturday/Sunday) to midnight 15 February (Sunday/Monday). It is expected mainly to affect the municipalities of La Orotava and Vilaflor.
Aemet has also issed a Yellow Alert for wind gusting to 70 km per hour on the Tenerife coasts. The alert will last from 3am tomorrow morning (Saturday/Sunda7) until midnight (Sunday/Monday). This alert is forecasting waves of up to 4 metres.
The forecast includes the possibility of up to 20 litres per square metre of rain per hour between 4am and 5pm tomorrow. C24H