Malta’s world-renowned Azure Window has collapsed after heavy storms.
The azure window was an artificial limestone curve on the Maltese island of Gozo, near Dwejira bay. It was formed following the destruction of two limestone sea caves. The Azure window was a rather popular site and a popular destination for visitors in Dwejira. It was popular for boating, swimming and scuba diving.
Several films like Game of Thrones have made it to the arch-famous in which an episode was filmed there. The arch is said to have collapsed on March 8 at 10:23 am. This was after Joseph Muscat, the Prime Minister of Maltese, delivered an announcement in a tweet. It was a shock to many people, especially those living near the Maltese islands and Gozo. Following Muscat’s tweet, a lot of people were saddened by the collapse of the Azure Window, where others said it was bound to happen sooner rather than later, considering it was in a fragile and dangerous state. Others hoped nobody was injured or killed during the fall because people normally swim underneath it.
It is said that the curve was dissolving because huge pieces of rocks had started falling beneath it. This led to warning signs to be set up to fend off people and stop them from walking on the curve top.
Peter Gatt, a geologist, conducted a study at the petition of the Ministry of Environment in 2013 but later said its endorsement had been amply ignored. Through a report, loads of the horizontal part of the curve, at around 90%, had collapsed in the past 30 years. Parts of the edge of the curve were also breaking and prone to collapse. In April 2012, pieces of rocks were being displaced and this made the azure window to become unstable.
Gatt warned that huge chunks of the sile were also prone to fall into the sea and that the presence of new breakings of the curve on the south side needed to be checked. He had advised monthly readings of the cracks.
Gozo has lost one of its symbolic attractions. The Gozitans are unhappy with the breakdown of the Azure window, and all they have left are pictures that serve as evidence of the touristic location.
Although they have lost such a landmark, Dwejira will remain a touristic area. They still have the blue hole and also the inland sea which is located directly across where the Azure Window stood. According to Muscat, the collapse was unavoidable due to the process of erosion.
Because of this, people are now urged to look to the future and to protect natural valuables as well as avoiding interfering with them as little as possible so that the generations to come can enjoy such touristic sites.
All hope is not lost for the Dwejira people. This has served as a wake up call to maintain natural sites. The region is graced with several other beauties, which include the inland Sea and the Fungus rock. Following this incident, people are urged to guard the future and protect natural valuables and avoid interfering with them.