Mirror Online: LONDON, England – The Met Office has issued a rare red weather warning for super-strong Storm Eunice winds just hours after Storm Dudley battered Britain – the government is holding a COBRA emergency meeting.
The Met Office has issued a rare red weather warning as Storm Eunice could bring winds of up to 100mph.
The ‘danger to life’ alert has prompted government ministers to hold a COBRA meeting this morning to discuss the response to oncoming Eunice amid an ongoing clean-up operation following Storm Dudley.
The red warning for winds has been issued for parts of the south west of England and south Wales, with severe gusts expected from 7am until around midday tomorrow.
It comes as thousands were left without power in Storm Dudley.
Earlier this morning, yellow wind and ice warnings remain in place from the northern tip of Scotland to as far south as Birmingham.
There have been stark warnings that approaching Eunice could be one of the worst tempests in 30 years, with winds of up to 100mph possible in parts of the UK.
Energy networks urge people to charge phones ahead of power cuts
Energy networks have said they are preparing for power outages caused by the storm.
The Energy Networks Association said almost all properties affected by power outages from Storm Dudley have now been reconnected.
Ross Easton, from the Association, which represents the UK’s energy network operators, said: “With either a yellow, amber or red ‘risk to life’ warning now in force across a large part of the UK tomorrow, we are reiterating our safety advice.
“If you come across fallen power lines or damage to the electricity network, stay well clear and call 105 for free to report it. In Northern Ireland the number is 03457 643 643.
Householders in the storm’s path are advised to charge up mobile phones and portable chargers, call 105 or use a mobile for updates if you have a power cut, keep a torch charged and make sure vulnerable friends, family and neighbours are prepared.
Trees trash car in West London
Social media users have been sharing pictures of their cars trashed by felled trees.
Elizabeth Howard tweeted a picture of a tree fallen onto her car in Ealing, West London.
A car in Derbyshire also suffered extreme damange during high winds.
School closures ahead of red warning
School closures are being announced by some councils across the country.
Suffolk County Council released a list of schools with current planned closures for tomorrow.
More information on what schools are closed across the county can be found here
West Midlands Railway issued ‘do not travel’ warning
Rail operator West Midlands Railway (WMR) is warning passengers not to travel tomorrow (Fri 18 Feb) due to the impact of Storm Eunice.
The warning follows delays caused to services across the West Midlands last night (Wed 16 Feb) as Storm Dudley felled trees and blew debris onto tracks. WMR is warning of similar disruption tomorrow, when blanket speed restrictions which will be in place across the network.
To help customers make alternative plans, tickets pre-booked for travel tomorrow will be accepted today (Thursday) and on Saturday instead.
COBRA meeting to be held this morning
The Cobra emergency committee will meet on Thursday “to discuss the response to Storm Dudley and Storm Eunice”, the Government said.
Cabinet Office Minister Michael Ellis will lead the meeting.
Liberal Democrat communities spokesman Tim Farron said government must be “on hand to provide support”.
He said: “Whenever a storm hits, the Government is disgracefully unprepared to support the thousands of people affected, they never learn from their mistakes.
“This time, as people up and down the country are barraged by stormy weather, the Government must be on hand to provide support.
“The Cobra meeting must agree on an emergency support plan including providing food, emergency accommodation and electricity generators for those affected by any power cuts.
Predicted path of Storm Eunice
The Met Office tweeted a simulation of the precicted path and wind strength of Storm Eunice.
Full Met Office warning
The warning from the Met Office reads: “Extremely strong west to southwesterly winds will develop over southwest England and south Wales early on Friday.
“Widespread inland gusts of 70-80 mph are likely and up to around 90 mph near some coasts, with dangerous conditions on beaches and seafronts.
“Winds are expected to ease from the west during the late morning.”
As well as dangerous winds, Eunice will also drag snowfall and ‘blizzard-like’ conditions – alongside gale-force winds – to some parts of Britain.
Rare red warning for 100mph winds
The Met Office has issued a rare red weather warning, with Brits told to be aware of flying debris causing danger to life and power lines being torn down by 100mph winds.
The warning covers parts of the south west of England and south Wales between 7am and midday tomorrow.
Plane diverts from Manchester Airport
A plane carrying the Manchester City players touched down in Liverpool after being forced to divert during Storm Dudley.
Strong winds brought on by the storm meant the aircraft had to make a last minute change to its destination.
The plane was carrying the first team back from Lisbon following their match against Sporting on Tuesday.
Their Titan Airways flight took off from Lisbon at around 2.12pm on Wednesday afternoon, reports the Manchester Evening News.
It was supposed to land in Manchester, but was later forced to divert as Storm Dudley took hold.
Data from FlightRadar show the plane circled over Manchester three times before diverting to Liverpool John Lennon airport, 30 miles away.
Man City took to Twitter writing: “We can confirm the plane transporting the first team home from Lisbon has landed safely in Liverpool, after high winds forced a diversion from Manchester.”The plane safely landed in Liverpool (Image:@LPL_Airport/Twitter)10:34Abigail O’Leary
Police helicopter hammered by winds
The NPAS tweeted footage of a its helicopter being hammered by winds mid-flight.
They tweeted: “As the weather forecast predicted, it’s slighly bumpy out there tonight.
Mass power outages
Northern Powergrid said 1,000 properties still had no lights on Thursday morning due to the weather.
They said: “Our teams have restored power to some 19,000 homes and businesses impacted by Storm Dudley, and we are working to get the lights back on for around 1,000 properties still affected.”
On Wednesday evening at 9pm, around 4,000 people were thought to still be without power.
About 14,000 customers were originally affected by the weather but 10,000 had been reconnected.
Rail travel chaos with more on way
National Rail said as of 7am on Thursday, dozens of train companies have been affected in the north of England, the Midlands, Wales and across most of Scotland, including LNER, Transport for Wales and ScotRail.
It added that due to damage to the overhead electric wires between Bedford and St Albans, some lines are currently blocked on the East Midlands Railway and Thameslink lines.Damaged overhead wires at Carlisle blocked all lines towards Glasgow and Edinburgh.
Lifeboat battles waves in storm
An RNLI lifeboat was seen battling against storm winds and waves as it took part in a training exercise.
The RNLI tweeted footage of the boat being hammered on surface, warning people to respect the water and stay away from the coast.
They said: “A clip of @Fowey_RNLI lifeboat tackling the tough weather during a training exercise on Sunday. With #StormDudley arriving and #StormEunice close behind, we urge people not to take unnecessary risks around the coast and #RespectTheWater.
“Check weather, tide and swell forecasts before you consider heading to the coast stay well back from stormy seas and breaking waves.
Seafront warnings ahead of Eunice
Agencies are warning peopple to stay away fron the seafront as Storm Eunice approaches.
Wales is one area expected to see the worst of the extreme weather.
Natrual Resources Wales said the coast was likely to see “significant impact” when Eunice hit.
They tweeted: “We’re monitoring things very closely, but we’re concerned that we’re likely to see significant #flood impacts along the Welsh coast tomorrow.
We’re out checking defences to reduce the risk to people and property.”
Eunice ‘not your usual storm’
Meteorologist Scott Duncan warned the storm is “not your usual wind storm” and is “really concerning”.
It comes as the Met Office has issued an Amber weather warning for wind across much of the UK.
The warning is in place from 3am until 9pm on Friday.
The warning states: “Storm Eunice may cause significant disruption due to extremely strong winds on Friday.
The Met Office also issued a “danger to life” warning of ‘flying debris’, ‘damage to buildings and homes’ and ‘power lined brought down’.