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'Avoid unnecessary trips,' authorities warn, as bad weather hits Catalonia

Civil protection agency tells public to steer clear of seafronts and parks, avoid outdoor activities, and for drivers to be prepared


21 January 2020 12:09 PM


ACN | Barcelona

With strong winds, heavy rains and snow continuing to sweep across Catalonia on Tuesday and into Wednesday, the Catalan authorities have warned the public to "avoid making trips that are not absolutely necessary."

"Two critical days are coming," warned one official from the civil protection agency on Tuesday, saying that while most of the rain will be focused on Catalonia's northernmost and southernmost tips, it will rain "in every part of the country."

With the wind raising waves as high 10 meters in some places, the authorities have warned people to steer clear of beaches, seafront promenades, and breakwaters, and to heed signs prohibiting access to such coastal spots.

In particular, civil protection warned people about resisting the temptation of approaching the seafront in order to take photographs of the waves: "We would like not to see any images of people recording the waves," said the official. 

Rivers and waterways are also danger spots, and officials warned people not to go near or cross them, particularly in the northern region of Girona, where the Onyar, Garó, Ter, Muga and Tordera rivers all present a risk.

Warning about falling branches and trees

Meanwhile, the agency also asked the public to avoid green areas, such as parks and gardens, due to the risk of falling branches, trees and structural elements, and also to avoid doing any outdoor leisure activities.

Drivers were also warned to check road conditions before embarking on a trip, with those in areas susceptible to snow advised to take with them snow chains, a blanket, a torch and a fully-charged mobile phone in case of emergencies.

As for whether schools are open or closed, the agency told people to only pay attention to official information online, as not all schools in Catalonia have been ordered to close, although some areas, such as Maresme, Gironès and Baix Empordà are affected.


  • Workers clear snow on the road between L'Estany and El Moianès, January 21, 2020 (by Estefania Escolà)

  • Workers clear snow on the road between L'Estany and El Moianès, January 21, 2020 (by Estefania Escolà)