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Massive disaster in Limassol

In 1969, just a few days before Christmas, an unexpected weather phenomenon hit Limassol, leaving behind a big destruction, extensive damages and 2 casualties. The disaster with the 3 tornadoes that hit the city that year passed to history and it was one of the most serious natural disaster that occurred in Limassol, after the Cyprus Independence. 

On that cold December day, 3 big tornadoes appeared to emerge from the sea at Akrotiri area. From there, they began to furiously beat Limassol, sweeping through what was ahead of them. The 1 of the 3 was stronger, causing the greatest damage and scaring the fear of where it was passing through.

The roofs of the houses were flawing in the air, houses collapsed, and trees were crushed. Still, unimaginable to the human mind, the tornado has managed to lift and overturn entire cars and 1 truck. However, the greatest loss was that of human life, as 2 Limassolians (1 of whom was Giannakis Villanos, father of the Metropolitan of Limassol) died from the tornado, making the city mourn just a few hours before the Christmas celebration.

The tornado it was huge, very distinct and accompanied by huffing air and rain. Within 15 minutes, it managed to hit the heart of Limassol, the Port, Eleftherias and Navarinou Street, Makarios Avenue, Mesa Gitonia and Agios Athanasios areas. The only people who seemed fearlessly in front of the phenomenon were some children who, as they say, ran him out on the bike, trying to reach him and discover its finishing point. The tornado weakened while moving towards to the mountains, on the north, where it lost its strength and disappeared.

* Information / Photographs: Pattichion Municipal Museum, Historical Archive, Limassol Study Center - Dimitris Theodorou

* NOTE: The articles of the Project "History of Limassol" present information emerged from historical researches so far. Any new data is embed into the articles, after they have been scientifically confirmed.

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