Britons heading to Spanish hotspot with high weather alert warned as adverse conditions could pose risk to asthmatics

Canary islands beaches

The Canary Islands could be hit with adverse weather conditions

Solen Le Net

By Solen Le Net

Published: 11/04/2024

- 09:02

Local authorities in the Canary Islands have issued a pre-alert for a unique weather phenomenon known as Calima

Local authorities in the Canary Islands have warned of weather conditions putting the Archipelago on high alert.

An influx of warm and dry air coupled with the intense haze known as Calima, could see temperatures soar to 35C in the days leading up to next Sunday. The temperatures are exceptionally high for spring, climbing 10 degrees above their expected range.

Authorities of the Canary Islands have reportedly activated a high-temperate alert for maximum temperatures in Lanzarote and Fuerteventura.

Meteorologists at Spain's Aemet State Weather Agency have warned that ongoing Atlantic storms could mix dust and rain, creating mud.

calima weather red dust

The Calima weather phenomenon can reduce visibility and air quality


A pre-alert has also been issued for Calima - a weather phenomenon that causes reduced visibility and air quality - according to Canarian Weekly.

Calima is the local name given to a unique weather phenomenon where sand from the Sahara sweeps over the Spanish peninsula.

Individuals with asthma and other breathing complications are advised to remain indoors during the weather event. In sensitive people, the dust can cause coughing, breathing problems, stuffy nose and eye irritation.

To avoid complications, individuals travelling to the Canary Islands should check weather alerts ahead of their journey.

The warning comes as a housing crisis has sparked tourism backlash at the Spanish destination for British travellers.

Locals in the Canary Islands are preparing to protest after soaring tourism demands have focused them on “living in their cars or even in caves”.

Activities say the popular destination is on the brink of collapse as it struggles to meet the evergrowing demands of tourism.

The booming industry has fuelled a significant jump in house prices, leaving many locals unable to access affordable housing.

Local groups on the islands have claimed the holiday destinations are “collapsing socially and environmentally” as a result.

An estimated five million tourists jetted out to the popular destination last year, with Tenerife the leading island in tourist numbers in 2023.

The tourist hotspot, which attracted more than 5.6 million visitors, was closely followed by Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, and Fuerteventura.


Water and mountains in Tenerife

Spanish authorities urge anyone with breathing complications to stay indoors during Calima


According to a report by local media Olive Press, British tourists accounted for a staggering 5.7 million arrivals in 2023.

Ivan Cerdena Molina, who is helping organise the protests, told The Olive Press: “We have nothing against individual tourists but the industry is growing and growing and using up so many resources and the island cannot cope.

“It’s a crisis, we have to change things urgently, people are living in their cars and even in caves, and locals can’t eat, drink or live well.”

President of the Canary Islands Fernando Clavijo clapped back at activists and urged them to use “common sense”. He said: “What we cannot do is attack our main source of employment and wealth because it would be irresponsible.”

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