Storm damage

Heavy rain, strong winds and high waves caused damage and devastation across the region in February.

According to a spokesman from the national civil protection authority (ANPC), a total of 140 incidents were registered on January 31 and February 1.

There were 13 road accidents, 15 incidences of flooding, three landslides, the falling of 79 trees and the fall of 30 structures.

He also said that a total of 196 vehicles and 478 people from the civil protection authority, fire brigades, GNR, INEM and other emergency services were involved in the cleanup and rescue operations on those two days.

The maritime authority registered 17 incidents at sea, including the grounding and sinking of recreational boats.

In Ferragudo, three sail boats were grounded on Praia Grande beach, with one having been smashed against the rocks due to the strong waves.

Faro airport unveils development project

Faro airport announced it was to undergo major development work which would see its capacity rise from six million passengers a year to eight million by 2013.

The ambitious project, announced on February 18 by airport management company, Ana Aeroportos, would cost a total of around 130 million euros.

The work would enable the airport to increase the number of flights possible per hour from the current 22 to 30.

When the work is complete, the airport will increase its capacity from six million passengers per year to around eight million.

The work, split into two phases, is due to be completed by the end of 2013.

British man shot at home by masked gang

A British man was treated for a gunshot wound to his leg after he was attacked at his home near Loulé on February 13.

Paul Thomas, 70, was at home with his partner Rod Hoare, 60, when the couple heard their dogs barking at the gate.

Rod Hoare told the Algarve Resident: “It was about 5.15pm when we heard our German Shepherd and Portuguese hunting dog barking.

“Paul went to the gate where there was a man in a Frankenstein mask,” he said. “He waved for him to open the gate and Paul said no and the next thing two more men appeared from behind the wall, both wearing masks and hooded tops and carrying guns.

“When he saw the guns, Paul turned to walk to the house and this is when he was shot in the back of the leg.”

All three men fled the scene without stealing any property or possessions.