Flood victims win nine year battle for EUR11m pay-off
21 December 2005, MADRID — Spain's highest court has condemned the Government and a regional authority to pay more than EUR 11 million in compensation to the relatives of 87 people killed in a flood nine years ago.
21 December 2005
MADRID — Spain's highest court has condemned the Government and a regional authority to pay more than EUR 11 million in compensation to the relatives of 87 people killed in a flood nine years ago.
In August 1996, a flood at a camp site in Las Nieves de Biescas, near Huesca in north eastern Spain, claimed the lives of 87 people.
The flood was caused by violent storm in which torrential rainfall caused a wall of water to run through the ravine, washing all in its wake away.
The campsite was destroyed and 87 people, including two Dutch and two French tourists, were killed.
The national government and the regional government of Huesca must pay the compensation, ruled the Audiencia Nacional.
The were found liable because the court said they should have known of the risk of flooding in that area but still allowed the campsite to be situated there.
But it exempted the director of the campsite, Luis Bardají, and the local council.
The ruling means the family of each victim will receive EUR 180,000 in compensation.
But some, like Sergio Murillo who lost both parents and two brothers, will receive more. In Murillo's case he is to get EUR 210,000.
The authorities claimed in their defence that it was a major disaster that could not have been forecast.
The hearing in Madrid was the last legal opportunity which the relatives of the victims had alter nine years of battling for compensation.
They had exhausted all other legal channels without success.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news