People in Cyprus should start packing away their winter jackets and wooly hats with meteorologists saying low temperatures are behind us and spring is on its way.
Larnaca and Famagusta district were lashed with heavy rain showers over the weekend in what officials believe was the final storm to hit the island before spring kicks in.
Temperatures are expected to slowly start climbing as of today. According to meteorologists, temperatures are expected to average between 21°C and 23°C on low lands before climbing to 26°C this Saturday.
While some will be welcoming the return of the summer months, others have expressed concern with water levels much lower this year. According to government figures, there were hardly any rain showers this month and that precipitation is only one-third of the norm compared to statistics from previous years. But warmer temperatures looked a long way off for residents and farmers in and around the districts of Famagusta and Larnaca on Saturday.
A 40-minute rainstorm in Larnaca had the emergency services on high alert with flooding in five different areas. Two traffic accidents were also recorded as a result of the bad weather – with one motorist rushed to hospital after his car skidded off the road and slammed into a wall.
Another driver escaped injury after the car he was driving on the Larnaca-Dhekelia road crashed into an advertising board.
But it wasn’t just traffic police that were concerned on the weekend. Farmers in both districts came within a whisker of seeing their crops damaged, according to the spokesman of the Cyprus Potato Growers Union Andreas Karyo, but were in the end left smiling as the showers quickly subsided.
“We were initially fearful because the crops came very close to being destroyed”, said Karyo. “But everything worked out well in the end. The potatoes got so much needed water and a lot of farmers were also able to hold back on irrigation, something which has saved struggling potato growers some money.
Other farmers, however, are still praying that rain showers will continue after a bad year for harvesting especially in November and December.
Saturday’s rain in the Famagusta district had helped out the villages of Dasaki, Ormidia, Xylotympou and Xylofagou while the neighbouring villages around Paralimni didn’t see much of the rain.
In Larnaca, the rain storms spanned across the communities between Aradippou and Leivadia while showers were also recorded at Larnaca airport.