A powerful Mediterranean hurricane hit North Greece today, causing damages, but no loss of life so far.
“Zorba,” as the Medicane is dubbed, will bring gale-force winds, heavy rain, and possible landslides, according to forecasters.
The Medicane has already killed five people in Tunisia and Libya where it hit first.
Severe weather reports have been issued for North Greece, Crete, Rhodes, west-southwest Turkey and southeast Bulgaria with a threat for severe winds, excessive rainfall and isolated severe storms possible. High risk threatens extreme southern Greece and northwest Turkey, where rainfall accumulation could exceed 250-300 mm in a 36-48 hour period.
Latest IR images of the #medicane in the central Mediterranean show vigorous convection around the center of the system in a growing comma shape: it seems very possible that convection will fully enclose the system in the next hours! Imagery: @meteociel pic.twitter.com/IBl1uikqG1
— severe-weather.EU (@severeweatherEU) September 29, 2018
The Civil Defense in Greece warned population not to go out unless absolutely necessary.
Medicanes, strong mesoscale cyclones with tropical-like features, develop occasionally over the Mediterranean Sea, according to experts Leone Cavicchia and Hans von Storch. Medicanes (Mediterranean + hurricane) are considered rare phenomena, occurring in September-October, and sometimes January-February.
Currently, poor weather conditions are causing flight delays, while ferry traffic is expected to collapse on Saturday and Sunday.
Medicane Zorba is expected to last until October 1.