Thursday saw up to 86 litres per square metre of rain fall on Barcelona, resulting in flooded tunnels, closed Metro stations and difficult driving conditions (article in Castilian, El Periodico). Much of Catalunya was affected by the heavy rain yesterday, but it was the capital city that suffered the worst. Five of its six underground lines were affected by flooding and leaks, which resulted in the closure of six stations and various station entrances. The road along Gran Via had to be closed to traffic at some points due to the large amount of water on certain lanes, while the city's ring roads also saw some entryways closed. The city council activated its emergency flood plan at 3pm and added resources to the service responding to emergency calls.
Unemployment in Spain fell by just over 14,000 in the third quarter of this year (article in Castilian, La Vanguardia). This means that 4,123,300 people are now out of work in the country, which is almost 18 percent of the working population. In Catalunya, the news wasn’t so positive. An additional 5,300 people lost their job during the past three months, bringing the total number of people without work here to 607,200, almost 16 percent of workers.
Spanish airline Iberia has announced that it is going to create a new low-cost airline to serve short- and mid-distance routes, and to connect with international flights out of Madrid (article in Catalan, Avui). The move, which is part of the business’s new plan 2012, is being taken to cut costs and reduce the number of routes served by the company, creating what Iberia describes as “a new production model”. “This is a logical move, because based on current figures, Iberia would disappear within five years,” according to the economist and airport expert, Ramon Tremosa. What this development signifies for the future of low-cost company Vueling, which was merged with Iberia’s previous low-cost airline Clickair earlier this year and of which 45 percent is owned by Iberia, is as yet unclear.
Also in the news: 17 pickpockets arrested 437 times in one year (El Periodico); Council halts development of ultra-right religious school (Avui); Songs used to promote use of Catalan in French area of Catalunya (video, La Vanguardia)