Local Daily News 23rd May

A fire burns a palm orchard in Callosa de Segura

A fire has affected a palm orchard in Callosa de Segura since the afternoon of this Saturday. The notice of the fire was received around 3:15 p.m. and shortly before 9:00 p.m. it was still active, although some means were withdrawn. Among them, the aerial ones, since the flames had a great reach and forced to mobilise a helicopter.

According to sources from the Provincial Firefighters Consortium, the fire has occurred in an area near the train track, and has reached such a magnitude that the flames have passed to the other side of the line. However, no personal injury has occurred. For the extinction tasks, the firefighters of the Diputación have mobilised a headquarters command unit, two heavy rural pumps, a heavy mother pump and a various rescue van, with a sergeant, two corporals and ten firefighters from the parks of Orihuela and Almoradi.

Members of the Generalitat’s forest firefighters have also participated, as sources from this body have reported. Specifically, the Villena and Guardamar units have attended, as well as the Xixona fire truck, the Mutxamel helicopter unit and a crew chief. According to 112 of the Generalitat, the helicopter left shortly after 5:30 p.m. However, the intervention was still underway almost three and a half hours later, according to the Provincial Firefighters Consortium.

Almost 90 shock measures to alleviate wear and abandonment in Orihuela Costa

In the context of a combative coastline, at the gates of summer and with elections on the horizon, the Cabo Roig and Lomas Neighbourhood Association has registered a proposal with the City Council with 88 actions to “combat the serious situation in which it finds itself Orihuela Costa”, prioritising the measures according to the needs: 45 of them are short-term (for the next six months) and 43 to be executed or, at least, started before the end of the mandate, in May next year.

In addition, the document calls for “sufficient items” to undertake them, with a view to municipal budgets, the first objective that the new government team has set for before the summer. Along the same lines, it insists that “a fair and proportional part of the remnants of previous years” be allocated to the coast.

40% of the measures, 35 in total, are included in the 2019 electoral programs of the parties that form the government, PSOE (14) and Ciudadanos (14), and also in that of Cambiemos (7), which supported the motion of censorship.

The neighbourhood organisation emphasises that in the extraordinary plenary session of April 25, in which the socialist Carolina Gracia reached the Mayor’s Office, unseating the PP from power, the motion was justified by “the situation of immobility that was conditioning municipal activity.” With regard to Orihuela Costa, “we fully subscribe to that statement, and the palpable proof is the document of proposals, some of which have not been carried out for more than 10 years, despite repeated requests from residents,” he stresses.

The document includes “an urgent and coordinated shock plan” in the face of the poor state of some streets and beaches, in order to “face the summer campaign with minimum levels of services” to deal with the arrival of visitors.

In Infrastructure, the renewal of asphalt and pavement of the roads in worse condition is demanded, with complete actions, which are not limited only to patching, with a specific budget of around 2 million euros. However, from the association they point out that they are aware that “for Orihuela Costa to come out of the morass in which it finds itself, an average investment of 2 million a year for four or five years is necessary”. In fact, they have located up to 40 points where there are dangerous potholes in more than 15 urbanizations. It is also a historical claim. Even at the beginning of the month they launched a campaign to claim the City Council for damage to their vehicles due to the poor condition of the roads.

The plan also refers to the need for “gradual and continuous clearing in all urbanizations, throughout the year, without waiting for the arrival of agricultural labourers, in the month of August, as has been happening in recent years” , in addition to the pruning of palm trees in all residential areas and the recovery of beaches that have been affected by recent storms -for example, in Punta Prima the sand has not been replaced-, as well as an action on the cliffs that They suffer continuous landslides, as in the walk from La Caleta to Cala Capitán and in Aguamarina, where the restoration of the micro-reserve pedestrian path is also requested.

Due to the increase in population in summer, a reinforcement of the Local Police staff and the troops dedicated to controlling compliance with municipal ordinances is required to eradicate illegal dumping on public roads, another of the historical problems. In fact, this week the City Council has announced that aerial means are being used with more than a dozen infractions detected in just four days.

For this reason, in the chapter on street cleaning, an increase in the resources allocated to the collection of pruning and equipment is demanded to “avoid the situation of last summer”, when the dirt on most streets was highlighted. Without forgetting, the “urgent replacement of all broken containers -of the four types-” and increasing the periodicity and the areas where a manual sweep is carried out, especially in the interior urbanizations, as well as the Ecopark, to be installed by the Vega Baja Sustainable Consortium on the plot assigned by the City Council, and a clean point.

Another urgent measure promoted by residents is to reduce the danger posed by the bridge over the AP-7 for pedestrians, through speed reducers, lighting and clearing the gutter. Its expansion for pedestrians, who are forced to walk along a hard shoulder just 40 centimetres wide, has been pending since the Lomas de Cabo Roig sector was developed in early 2000.

In the medium term, the document focuses on the development of an industrial estate “as a complement to the current model, based solely on tourism” and expanding the educational offer that diversifies training, while reflecting the urban excesses of decades: revision of homes that lack certificates of occupancy and require builders to regularise, a new General Urban Planning Plan that contemplates sustainable growth and gradual regularisation of urbanizations without reception.

In short, they are the proposals of an association that brings together 200 members, a reflection of a good part of the feelings of the neighbours and residents of a demanding area that denounces a historical abandonment by the Administration.

Thus, they ask for the creation of a Department of the Coast and to bring the City Council closer to the citizens by planning regular meetings with the associations. At the gates of summer and with the elections just around the corner, the coast raises its voice.

The demolition of the Arenales hotel takes 7 months with the rubble not removed at the gates of summer

The demolition of the Arenales del Sol hotel continues at full speed to try to clear the beach as soon as possible. However, at the gates of summer, a mountain of rubble and the hole in the basement of the old building, converted into a pool of water, form part of the image of the seafront. The complex demolition began in October, although it was in July when the operators arrived at the plot to start the preliminary work that included the dismantling of almost two tons of asbestos.

After having far exceeded the planned deadlines (three weeks for the demolition and another three for the removal of debris), the intervention is now in the final stretch to recover a plot that since the sixties has been occupied first by a luxury hotel and a benchmark in Europe and later for its ruins. Now, after having removed an immensity of materials, a machine crushes in situ the huge amount of rubble that still accumulates and in parallel another fills the main hole with sand. At the same time, another is dedicated to demolishing one of the walls that separates the site from the old building with one of the streets. The last step, once everything is clean, will be the turn of adding the sand extracted this winter from the neighbouring beach of El Altet to incorporate it into the surface layer, as authorised by the General Directorate of Coasts itself.

In total, it is planned that 6,000 square metres of beach will be regenerated, something that has been set as an example by the Ministry of the Environment for actions similar to the rest of Spain.

And after a year since the mayor, Carlos González, announced that the long-awaited demolition of the hotel’s ghost was beginning, the question that almost everyone asks in Arenales is what is left to finish? A question that no one dares to say due to the unforeseen events that are associated with the works and even more so with this one that has taken longer than desirable because more inconveniences have been found than they imagined. For example, the large amount of concrete that was in the subsoil of the building.

However, the intention of the company in charge of the work is to be able to reach June with the intervention, if not finished, 90%, as the mayor of Arenales stated. In any case, the works continue with their sights set on achieving this goal, although there are no guarantees that it will be possible to have the area ready for the start of the high season, which generates some concern among residents and businesses.

Be that as it may, this already seems like the last definitive gasp in a decades-long battle to return this parcel of maritime domain to public use. After the reopening of the hotel failed in 2015, the demolition has been a municipal objective that finally, although it has been delayed, has ended up being fulfilled.

A pathologist was sentenced for the death of a woman in the province due to a cancer that was not detected in time

A Criminal Court has sentenced a pathologist at Elche Hospital for negligence that prevented the early detection of cancer in a patient who died, according to the sentence. The ruling, which is not final and against which it is possible to appeal before the Court, considers him responsible for a crime of homicide due to professional negligence and imposes nine months in prison and two and a half years of disqualification from practising as a doctor. The husband and son of the deceased had already been compensated by the Ministry of Health after a process by administrative means, but they continued criminally against the doctor in a process that has ended with this sentence, exercising the private accusation through the lawyer Juan Miguel Gualda.

The woman began to be treated in September 2003 at a health centre in Elche for the appearance of moles on her back that were finally removed in November. The samples were sent to the pathologist for a biopsy, a study that concluded that they were benign, so the patient was not subjected to any type of follow-up. Years later, in April 2009, the woman was admitted after going to the emergency room with symptoms of dizziness, vomiting and a lump under her left armpit. At the centre they found that the woman had a very widespread cancer and she ended up dying in September of that same year at the age of 42. The ruling relates that, on her day, when the melanoma was removed, the pathologist only examined two of the three samples received. It was the one where she was left without analysing where the malignant cells were. “The tumour causing the metastases was a melanoma,” says the resolution.

The family filed a complaint at first through the administrative channel, a process that ended with a resolution of January 2013 in which the Ministry of Health concluded that the necessary requirements for the existence of patrimonial responsibility of the Administration were met, since that the plaintiffs had suffered “damage resulting from the operation of the public service, not having the obligation to bear it.” That resolution was based on an expert report that concluded that “there was an objective diagnostic error in the interpretation of the initial biopsy (…). That error meant depriving the patient of the possibility of adequate treatment that could have prevented the evolution of the tumour and death due to its spread”, states the sentence. With this resolution in the administrative channel, the family went to criminal court against the doctor who made the mistake.

The Criminal Judge concludes that the defendant’s actions “did not comply with a correct lex artis, (the levels of quality that are required of professionals) thereby causing the death of the patient, due to the lack of diligence regarding the examination of the excised mole” and his report on it, which stated that the patient’s lesion was benign. According to the magistrate’s arguments, if the accused “had examined the central cut of the sample received according to correct medical practice, he would have described it as a melanoma, since said cut did not offer any doubt about its malignancy.” The ruling concludes that “we are facing gross negligence” and that “the predictability of the result if proper behaviour had been adopted is more than evident.” The judge recalls that the expert reports provided to the case indicate that with early detection and adequate treatment there was a 95% chance of cure and of avoiding metastasis. In this sense, he recalls that if a histological report of the tests was not made at the time, as the defence stated that it should have been done, it was precisely because the defendant made a report saying that the sample was benign. “The medical action that is omitted could have prevented or improved the outcome of melanoma,” concludes the magistrate.

The judge understands that there is a mitigating factor for undue delay, considering that “there has been a truly notable and unjustified delay in the processing of the case.” Although these are events that occurred between 2003 and 2009, it is clarified that a procedure was previously followed through administrative channels, before the complaint was filed in January 2015. Even so, the criminal case has taken seven years to be heard. be prosecuted.

The defence had also raised a mitigating circumstance for damage compensation, alleging that the relatives of the deceased had already been compensated. A possibility that the judge rejects because “the accused has not contributed with his actions during the entire procedure or to repair or lessen the damage caused.”

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