Heavy wind, rain and snowstorms hit Spain, force evacuations

Spain's east coast is being hit with heavy wind gusts and rainstorms that have resulted in port closures and evacuations in many towns.

Bad weather conditions began taking a toll on Thursday, when authorities said around 2,000 people were trapped overnight in vehicles as heavy snowfall cut off several roads in eastern Spain, forcing the army's emergency unit to assist many along the highway linking Madrid to Valencia.

Rainstorms and coastal wind gusts clocking close to 100 kph (around 60 mph) increased during the weekend, resulting in power outages in the regions of Albacete and Valencia, where the port closed down. There has been flooding and damage to roads and boardwalks on the island of Mallorca and the Catalonian coast, where 8-meter-high (26-foot-high) waves forced families to evacuate their homes.