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It's now official. After several days of conjecture, Sunday is likely to bring the first storm of 2020 to the region after the state meteorological agency AEMET issued an official set of warnings for the potential for strong winds, heavy rain and even deep snow in the inland mountains which could extend into Monday.

A yellow risk warning will come into force at 10.00 a.m. on Sunday for the potential or strong north/north-easterly winds with maximum gusts up to 80 km/h, a warning remaining in place until midnight the same day. With those strong winds come the heavy seas and there is a potential for 3 metre waves pushed by Force 7 northerlies. At 4.00 p.m. the risk warning elevates to orange as the winds are likely to become stronger (Force 8/9) and 4/6 metre waves mean that special care should be taken when using coastal roads and promenades. The Climate Laboratory at the University of Alicante has suggested that the maritime storm could be the worst of recent years.

At midday another yellow risk warning kicks in, warning of the potential of heavy rain with accumulated precipitation of 60 mm possible over 12 hours and these rains are likely to continue into Monday. With the wet period likely to continue well into next week, there are indications that some areas of the northern Alicante and southern Valencia region could receive more than 200-300 mm of rain over the next few days.

At 3.00 p.m., an orange risk warning comes into form warning of the possibility of blizzards – most likely in the interior – which could see an accumulation of some 5cm of snow above 500m; the warning also continues into Monday. (The mountain of Montgó stands at 753m so there is a chance that we could see a white summit, not entirely unknown in winter but still something to appreciate.) The Climate Laboratory at the University of Alicante has already advised against heading into the mountains to see the snow: “the situation is going to be very complicate with low temperatures, wind gusts of more than 100 km/h and poor visibility. And, of course, it is likely that in some passes and mountain roads you will have to use snow chains.”

These warnings are issued in response to observations and climate models of a very complicated developing situation. As such, they don't mean that things will definitely happen but that there is a high enough likelihood of them doing so for the state meteorological agency to issue them. Updates will be forthcoming as the situation evolves.

The potential for stormy weather does put into question the programmed events for the fiesta of San Antonio Abad on Sunday; the schedule will see the traditional horse and cart parade in the morning between the town and the port before the popular blessing of the animals in the Plaza de la Constitución from about 1.00 p.m. In addition, CD Jávea are due to be playing CD Dénia in the big Marina Alta derby at 12 midday. Updates will be posted as soon as we have them.

Source: AEMET / Laboratorio de Climatología - Universidad de Alicante
Date: Friday 17th January 2020





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