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Siberian air mass sweeps across Spain

by admin   |   Posted on Thursday, 1 March 2018 04:00 AM

People make their way through snow in Canary Wharf, London, Britain, February 27, 2018. REUTERS/Tom Jacobs

Freezing weather dubbed as the “Beast from the East” swept in from Siberia, forcing some schools to close and snarling the travel plans of thousands across Europe.

Parts of eastern Britain have seen up to 10 cm of snow this week, Britain’s weather service said, with Kent, North Wales and the northeast of England as the worst-affected areas.

Cars stood still on the M20 motorway in Kent and hundreds of train services and some flights were canceled and schools were closed.

“I felt it wasn’t safe to open. You know I’m here but obviously, I can’t look after 420 children so that was why I made the decision. It’s still snowing now. The roads aren’t safe and I just didn’t want staff being put at risk,” Mulbarton Primary School headteacher  Bev Theobald said.

Meanwhile, yellow and orange alerts were issued nationwide in Spain. This, as rain, wind, rough seas, snow and low temperatures are expected to extend at least until Sunday, according to forecast.

The western Croatian town of Delnice in Croatia saw 182 cm of snow blanketing the area and temperatures hit a low of minus 20 degrees Celsius.

“Too much of it fell in a short period of time, that’s why this is such a problem,” said Bruno Kovac, a Delnice locale resident.

Boats in the Bakar Bay Marina on the Adriatic coast were covered with a thick layer of ice after sleet froze in sub-zero temperatures. Some sunk under the heavy weight of ice.

Meanwhile, videos and photographs posted on social media showed Corsica. France’s capital Ajaccio, blanketed with snow from Monday evening, as well as surrounding mountainous villages.

The cold snap triggered a jump in power prices in France, a country still largely reliant on electric heating. Nonetheless, state utility EDF said it was delaying planned maintenance outages at two nuclear reactors by a week. — Reuters

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Spain is 2019’s healthiest country – Bloomberg

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Friday, 1 March 2019 02:59 PM

MANILA, Philippines – The 2019 Bloomberg Healthiest Country Index named Spain as the healthiest nation in the world.

The data company ranks 169 economies according to factors that contribute to overall health based on data from the World Health Organization (WHO); United Nations Population Division (UNDP); and the World Bank.

Spain, which placed sixth in the previous report published in 2017, scored 92.8, surpassing Italy which slipped from number 1 to number 2 spot with 91.59.

Other nations in the top 10 include:

Iceland (3rd) with 91.44;

Japan (4th) with 91.38 climbing from seventh spot in 2017;

Switzerland (5th) with 90.93;

Sweden (6th) with 90.24;

Australia (7th) with 89.75;

Singapore (8th) with 89.29 dropping from 4th spot in 2017;

Norway (9th) with 89.09;

and Israel (10th) with 88.15.

Variables weighed include life expectancy, while imposing penalties on health risks i.e. tobacco use and obesity, plus environmental factors like access to clean water and sanitation.

Based on data from the UNDP, Spain is forecast to have the highest lifespan in 2040 at almost 86 years having the highest life expectancy at birth among European nations, followed by Japan, Singapore and Switzerland.

The main factor for Spaniards and Italians being the healthiest, according to researchers from the University of Navarra Medical School, is their eating habit – a “Mediterranean diet, supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil or nuts, had a lower rate of major cardiovascular events than those assigned to a reduced-fat diet”.

The United States, meanwhile, ranked 35th, a 1-point drop from 34th in the 2017 results as life expectancy in the country on downtrend due deaths from drug overdoses and suicides.

Bloomberg analysis focuses in its final index nations with at least 0.3 million population and sufficient data and 169 WHO states met such criteria. – Marje Pelayo

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Thousands of striking taxi drivers protest in central Madrid

by admin   |   Posted on Tuesday, 29 January 2019 10:19 AM

Thousands of protesters at Sol Square in Madrid, Spain seen from top shot on January 28, 2019 | Reuters

Thousands of Madrid taxi drivers staged a protest on Monday (January 28) at Sol Square in central Madrid against the online ride-hailing sector, including companies like Uber and Cabify which they say ignore regulations and pose unfair competition.

The protest joined by taxi drivers from across Spain and Portugal ended a day of demonstrations that started with the blockage of Madrid’s most iconic avenue earlier in the day.

Spain’s government agreed to pass new regulations in September guaranteeing a cap on licences for Uber and similar services at a ratio of just one permit for every 30 taxi permits.

The regulation also permitted Spanish regions to adopt their own restrictions on the services as they see fit.

But taxi workers demand further restrictions such a law that would force customers of ride-hailing services to order transport an hour beforehand.

Taxi drivers have been on strike since Monday (January 21). — Reuters

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Aerials of Toddler rescue efforts in Spain

by admin   |   Posted on Tuesday, 22 January 2019 10:04 AM


Aerial shot of rescue operation in Totalan, Spain on January 21, 2019 | Reuters

 Local police released aerial footage of rescue efforts on Monday (January 21) to reach a two-year-old boy who fell into a borehole in southern Spain more than a week ago.

The toddler, Julen, fell down the shaft as his family walked through a private estate in Totalan, Malaga on Jan. 13. There have been no signs of life since.

Miners have been drilling day and night to create a parallel shaft, hoping they will be able to cut across by Tuesday to find the child.

Rescuers found that the borehole – 100 metres (300 feet) deep and just 25 cm (10 inches) wide – was blocked with earth, raising fears that soil had collapsed onto the child.

Spanish miners and engineers have been joined by workers from a Swedish firm who helped locate 33 Chilean miners rescued after 69 days underground more than seven years ago. — Reuters

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