Live storm updates as Britain hit by gale-force winds, travel chaos

  • More than 240 Environment Agency flood alerts in place in England and Wales, with most in East Anglia
  • Gusts of 140mph in parts of Aberdeenshire and Inverness-shire as ALL trains in Scotland are cancelled
  • Environment Secretary Owen Paterson will chair emergency Cobra meeting today on storm disruption
  • Police Scotland advise motorists not to drive in the south, west, central belt and south Perthshire
  • Storm will create the biggest waves in living memory off north-east over next few days, peaking on Saturday
  • Public should expect 36 hours of disruption, Norfolk Police warns as Great Yarmouth homes are evacuated
  • Evacuations planned in Essex and Suffolk as people are seen being rescued in North Wales and Merseyside

Thousands of families in coastal towns were being evacuated or rescued today as gusts of up to 140mph battered Britain in a hurricane-force storm.

A lorry driver died in Scotland and a man riding a mobility scooter in King’s Park in Retford, was also killed when he was hit by a falling tree.

More than 120,000 homes were left without power as the most serious tidal surge for 60 years is predicted to hit the east coast tonight.

More than 10,000 homes in Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex are being evacuated, while residents were also rescued in Rhyl, North Wales, and Merseyside.

As they were taken away from their homes in dinghies, forecasters feared the worst is yet to come during tonight’s high tide at around 10pm.

Taken away: Emergency rescue service workers evacuate residents in an inflatable boat in flood water on a residential street in Rhyl, North Wales Taken away: Emergency rescue service workers evacuate residents in an inflatable boat in flood water on a residential street in Rhyl, North Wales

 

Bringing her dog: People are rescued by the RNLI from the floods in Rhyl as heavy seas and high tides sweep across the countryBringing her dog: People are rescued by the RNLI from the floods in Rhyl as heavy seas and high tides sweep across the country

Helped: People are rescued from the floods in Rhyl. Winds disrupted transport and power supplies in Scotland and threatened coastal flooding in EnglandHelped: People are rescued from the floods in Rhyl. Winds disrupted transport and power supplies in Scotland and threatened coastal flooding in England

Teamwork: Floods in the seaside resort New Brighton on the Wirral in Merseyside after high winds at high tide on the coastal roadTeamwork: Floods in the seaside resort New Brighton on the Wirral in Merseyside after high winds at high tide on the coastal road.

Walk this way: Road markings are impossible to see in New Brighton, Merseyside, as the 410 bus tries to make its way throughWalk this way: Road markings are impossible to see in New Brighton, Merseyside, as the 410 bus tries to make its way through

Debris: Floods in New Brighton in Merseyside after high winds. A car was washed into the wall at the Fort Perch Rock car parkDebris: Floods in New Brighton in Merseyside after high winds. A car was washed into the wall at the Fort Perch Rock car park

 

Making it through: A police officer shields herself from the storms as huge waves engulf Whitehaven harbour in Cumbria this morningMaking it through: A police officer shields herself from the storms as huge waves engulf Whitehaven harbour in Cumbria this morning

More than 240 flood alerts were in place across England and Wales, with 6,000 homes expected to suffer from flooding in the next 24 hours.

Sea levels could be as high as those during the floods of 1953 that left 307 dead, although defences have significantly improved since then.

The lorry driver died and four other people were hurt when his HGV fell onto cars on the A801 in West Lothian as winds disrupted transport networks.

This morning the entire rail network in Scotland was suspended, with trains halted at their nearest stations and passengers told to disembark.

Motorists in Scotland have also been warned not to travel due to ‘extremely dangerous’ road conditions. 

Transport Scotland has escalated its travel warning to stage four red, advising people to avoid travelling, particularly in high-sided vehicles.

Closures, fallen trees, minor accidents and incidents of flash flooding are affecting the road network in the south, west, central and Perthshire areas.

Office workers struggled to stay upright today in Leeds (1)
Office workers struggled to stay upright today in Leeds (2)
Office workers struggled to stay upright today in Leeds (3)
Office workers struggled to stay upright today in Leeds (4)
Office workers struggled to stay upright today in Leeds (5)

Blown over: A woman struggled to stay on her feet while walking across the road today in Leeds, West Yorkshire, as the country was battered by high winds. She had been walking near Bridgewater Place. Leeds City Council closed the road past the 367ft tower after predictions that wind speeds in the area could reach 75mph

Holding on: Pedestrians cling onto poles as they are battered by gale force winds by Bridgewater Place in Leeds, West YorkshireHolding on: Pedestrians cling onto poles as they are battered by gale force winds by Bridgewater Place in Leeds, West Yorkshire

A man runs after his newspaper in strong winds and rain in Shipley, West Yorkshire
Strong winds and rain in Saltaire, West Yorkshire, on Thursday morning

Carrying on: A man runs after his newspaper in strong winds and rain in Shipley (left) and a woman battles against the elements in Saltaire (right), West Yorkshire

 

 

Source : Daily mail

 

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