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Storm Gloria kills at least 3 in Spain and disrupts travel

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Storm Gloria kills at least 3 in Spain and disrupts travel
Copyright  Emilio Morenatti/AP
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At least three people have died in Spain since a violent snowstorm first started to batter the country on Sunday.

Storm Gloria has primarily hit the eastern shores of the country as well as the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean.

Several provinces, including three in Catalonia, remain on high alert on Tuesday with the meteorological agency, AEMET, warning that waves could reach seven metres in Barcelona and on the litoral near Girona. On Monday, waves of more than 14 metres were recorded on the Majorcan islet of Dragonera.

The agency also warned of "persistent and locally strong rainfall" of up to 150 mm in some areas as well as "copious snowfall" from as low as 300 metres. It estimates that in some places in Aragon, Catalonia, Murcia and Valencia between 20 and 40 cm of snow will accumulate on Tuesday while "very strong" wind gusts could exceed 100 km/h.

The storm, which is expected to recede on Wednesday, has killed at least three people including a homeless woman in Gandia, Valencia. A man also lost his life in a village some 130 km west of Madrid after being hit by a tile, while another was killed in the northwestern region of Asturias when a vehicle collided with him as he was putting snow chains on his tyres.

The rain and winds have also severely disrupted travel with access to more than a hundred roads cut or restricted. The ports of Valencia and Gandia were forced to close on Monday due to the adverse conditions as was the Alicante airport, the latter of which announced on Tuesday morning that operations had gradually resumed.

The French Pyrenees have also been impacted with the Meteo France meteorological agency putting the Pyrénées Orientales department on amber alert, flagging the risk of heavy rainfall and snow.

Road travel is being curtailed with buses and trucks banned from the roads in some areas while the A9 motorway, which links France to Spain, has been partially closed.