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Madeira hit by floods and torrential rain on Christmas Day

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Madeira hit by floods and torrential rain on Christmas Day
Copyright  Кадр из видео AP/Fabio Freitas
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Madeira was hit by flooding and rockslides on Christmas Day after torrential rain and hail hit the Portuguese island.

Dozens of people were evacuated from their homes and at least one house was destroyed, local media reported.

Footage taken by a local firefighter from inside his car showed rivers of water flooding roads and almost completely covering a nearby cemetery.

Only the western side of the island emerged unscathed.

By 6 pm the island's meteorological station recorded 161 mm of precipitation in Porto Moniz, 115.7 mm in Pico do Arieiro, 90 mm in Santana, 76 mm in Pico Alto and 40 mm in Funchal, according to its director, Victor Prior.

The island lies 400 kilometres from the Portuguese mainland in the Atlantic Ocean.