Storms batter northern Europe

Strong winds cause widespread disruption from Scotland to the Baltic States.

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    Strong winds from a second Atlantic storm in two days batters much of Britain  [AFP]
    Strong winds from a second Atlantic storm in two days batters much of Britain [AFP]

    An intense area of low pressure swept into northwest Europe on Friday night into Saturday. Thousands of houses in northern Scotland were left without power as violent winds smashed through the Highlands and Islands.

    More than 100,000 properties were without electricity at the height of the storm. Even on Sunday, around 40,000 were still without electricity as engineers struggled to restore power in the freezing conditions.

    Rachel McEwen, the Director of Sustainability at Scottish and Southern Energy explained ‘Yesterday, we had 1,000 people working on the storms, today we've got 1,200 because the cold, the ice, the snow is definitely slowing people down,’

    The strongest winds were recorded on the island of Lewis with a gust of 182kph. Inevitably, all forms of travel have been badly hit. Authorities say ferry services were disrupted, and fallen trees blocked many roads.

    Several railway lines were closed for a time and it has been a similar picture in northern Germany as the bad weather swept across England into the near continent.

    National railway Deutsche Bahn said routes from Hamburg to Hannover, Berlin and Bremen were closed for a time, along with several others in the country's north, due to uprooted trees and high winds.

    The worst of the weather has now moved over the Baltic States but the keen westerly or northwesterly flow is now feeding wintry showers across northern parts of the UK into Scandinavia across northern Europe.

    All eyes will soon turn back to the northwest as yet another weather system rattles in from the Atlantic. Forecasters expect a rapidly deepening area of low pressure to pass between Iceland and Scotland on Monday with another round of severe storms with damaging winds.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


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