NEWS
09/02/2020 17:52 GMT | Updated 10/02/2020 13:13 GMT

Storm Ciara Is Wreaking Havoc Right Across The UK

Heavy rain and 90mph winds disrupt travel and damage buildings, with a guest house collapsing into a river.

Storm Ciara has battered the UK as widespread flooding and winds of more than 90 miles per hour has caused major disruption and even buildings to collapse into a river.

The hammering gale-force winds and heavy rain has disrupted flights, trains and ferries, with drivers facing treacherous conditions on the roads.

Some towns and villagers were left counting the cost of flood damage as the Met Office warned flying debris could lead to injuries or endanger lives.

Gusts of 93 miles per hour were recorded in Aberdaron, a village at the tip of the Llyn Peninsula, in north Wales, while Cumbria saw almost six inches of rain in 24 hours. 

In Scotland, part of a cafe and guest house collapsed into River Teviot as footage posted on social media showed a wall of the building crumbling.

Police were called to Bridge House Guest House and Sonia’s Bistro in Hawick in the Borders at around 9.30am on Sunday to reports of structural damage.

Emergency services said the building had been evacuated and there were no reports of any injuries.

Elsewhere, three people were injured after part of a pub roof collapsed in Perth on Saturday evening and Bedfordshire police said emergency services were called to Flitwick on Sunday after a tree fell onto a car.

Dozens of domestic and international flights have been cancelled, while rail companies in England, Scotland and Wales have urged passengers not to travel and say they will operate reduced timetables and speed restrictions on Sunday.

Drivers were warned they face treacherous conditions with reports of fallen trees and other debris blocking roads, while firefighters in Blackpool had to rescue a motorist whose car got stuck in deep floodwater.

The Queen did not attended church in Sandringham due to high winds in the area.

Storm Ciara also disrupted Sunday’s sporting programme, as horse racing, rugby union, rugby league and football fixtures, including the Premier League match between Manchester City and West Ham in Manchester, were all postponed.

The town of Appleby-in-Westmorland in the county was hit by severe flooding as the River Eden burst its banks, with residents battling to protect their homes.

ASSOCIATED PRESS
Men try to control the flow of flood water, outside a property, in Appleby-in-Westmorland, in Cumbria.
ASSOCIATED PRESS
A view of a flooded street, in Appleby-in-Westmorland, as Storm Ciara hits the UK, in Cumbria, England, Sunday Feb. 9, 2020. Trains, flights and ferries have been cancelled and weather warnings issued across the United Kingdom as a storm with hurricane-force winds up to 80 mph (129 kph) batters the region. (Owen Humphreys/PA via AP)
PA
Flooded streets in Appleby-in-Westmorland, Cumbria, as Storm Ciara hits the UK.

Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service urged people not to drive through floodwater after they rescued a number of motorists, while police forces across the country advised people to stay off the roads.

More than 200 flood warnings have been issued, including one rated severe at Pateley Bridge, in North Yorkshire, meaning there is a danger to life.

A trampoline blown onto train tracks in Chelsfield, south London, disrupted rail services from the south east into the capital.

A surfer was rescued from rough seas after losing his board following a search by rescue teams from HM Coastguard and the RNLI off the coast of Hastings, East Sussex.

The Queen did not attend church in Sandringham due to high winds in the area.

A North Wales Twitter user shared footage of rough seas flooding roads and bringing water to his front door on Tremadoc Bay in Criccieth, Gwynedd.

“This is quite an exceptional storm and I haven’t seen wind this strong for quite a few years,” 58-year-old company director Gethin Jones told the PA news agency. 

Flights to and from major UK airports were cancelled and disrupted, including Qantas flight QF10, which returned to Heathrow after experiencing a suspected tailstrike during takeoff.

Engineers found no damage to the fuselage of the Boeing 747, but the flight to Perth was cancelled because of limits on the crews flying time, the airline said.

A passenger on a flight from Florida said the plane’s landing at Gatwick Airport on Sunday morning was aborted three times before finally landing on its fourth attempt.

But strong tailwinds as Storm Ciara blew in saw British Airways break the record for the fastest flight by a conventional airliner from New York to London.

The BA112 flight, which took off from John F Kennedy airport, was scheduled to land at Heathrow at 6.25am on Sunday but arrived 102 minutes early at 4.43am.

Train firms including Caledonian Sleeper, Gatwick Express, Grand Central, Great Northern, Hull Trains, LNER, Northern, Southeastern, Southern, Thameslink and TransPennine Express, issued “do not travel” warnings.

And there was widespread disruption across the network as rail companies in England, Scotland and Wales operated with reduced timetables and speed restrictions in place throughout Sunday.

A trampoline blown onto train tracks in Chelsfield, south London, disrupted rail services from the South East into the capital.

Ferries have also been disrupted, as P&O said all services at the Port of Dover were suspended due to strong winds and Mersey Ferries cancelled all services until further notice.

The Humber Bridge was closed entirely for only the second time in its history, according to its website.

ASSOCIATED PRESS
Workmen clear up after tree fell on a speed camera in Tilehurst, England.
ASSOCIATED PRESS
Waves crash over the harbour and a lighthouse in Newhaven on the south coast of England.
PA
A fallen tree in the Longlevens area of Gloucester.
Joe Giddens - PA Images via Getty Images
Damage to one of the stands at Wisbech Town Football Club in Cambridgeshire.

In the seaside town of Worthing, West Sussex, high winds were causing a huge crane to spin around.

A yellow crane at a building site was seen rotating freely in the wind as 41mph gusts battered the south coast.

Normally a solid presence high above a 141-home development on the seafront, Sunday’s storm has turned the crane into a spinning top.

Sussex Police said they had received several reports about the whirling crane but confirmed there is no cause for concern as it is designed to move with the wind.

Amid gales in Stanmore, London, a crane was folded over on itself “like it’s made of spaghetti”.

Lindsey Wells took a picture of the crane by Stanmore Tube station at just after 11am and said two fire engines were in attendance.

The 36-year-old local resident said: “(It) looks like it’s made of spaghetti. It’s lucky it wasn’t during the week, as it’s a very busy, big development.”

London’s eight Royal Parks, which include Hyde Park and Regent’s Park, were all closed on Sunday.

The London Winter Run 10k event, due to be attended by 25,000 runners, was cancelled after organisers said they were “not able to guarantee the safety of our runners, crew and volunteers”.

The Met Office has an amber warning for wind in place for much of England and Wales from 8am until 9pm, while an amber warning for rain applies to parts of Scotland.

Yellow weather warnings cover the whole UK with the heaviest rain expected over high ground.

Met Office meteorologist Helen Roberts said the gusts of between 60 and 70mph inland are “quite exceptional”, with the worst of the weather likely to hit before 6pm.

“As well as the strength of the wind there is the rain to come today,” she said.

“So far, we have seen some impact from the rain, which has been heavy and persistent across Northern Ireland and northern England in the last 24 hours.

“It is likely we will see further impact from the wind such as falling debris, roof tiles coming off, branches and trees down, with disruption to travel as well.”