One dead, thousands of homes without power as storm batters Britain

LONDON (AFP) – One man was killed, thousands of homes cut off from power and drivers stuck on freezing roads overnight as a powerful storm hit northern Britain, the authorities said on Saturday (Nov 27).

The man was killed when his car was struck by a falling tree in Northern Ireland late on Friday, the police said, as Storm Arwen triggered a rare “red weather” warning from Britain’s Met Office.

“People should stay away from the coast as waves and debris are a danger to life,” the meteorological service said.

Packing wind gusts of almost 160kmh, the severe gale caused power cuts to more than 55,000 customers in northern England, the region’s electricity utility said.

Express train services were suspended north of Newcastle and roads closed by fallen debris in parts of Scotland, while snowfall from Friday afternoon brought disruption to routes more widely.

The snow and fallen trees caused road blockages across northern England and Scotland, forcing many drivers to sleep in their vehicles overnight, according to traffic police and social media.

Around 120 lorries were “stuck in the snow” on one section of motorway between Manchester and Leeds in northern England, the police said, tweeting pictures of the road blanketed in white before snow ploughs could be deployed.

While the winds had eased by Saturday morning, the Met Office warned conditions would remain challenging and the public was urged to avoid non-essential travel.


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