Storm cripples public life in parts of Great Britain
Storm Eunice is causing chaos in parts of Europe. Traffic has also been affected, as have night trains from Switzerland.
With record winds of nearly 200 kilometers per hour, Storm Eunice made landfall in England and crippled public life in large parts of the country. In the capital, London, as in parts of southern England and Wales, there was a red storm warning, the storm caused power outages and canceled trains and flights. Other European countries also had to struggle with the hurricane named Zeinab in German-speaking countries. There were traffic disruptions in Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium and France. The storm is moving in the direction of Switzerland as well.
Strong winds also severely damaged the roof of the O2 Arena, formerly known as Millennium Dome, in London. British media write that it is the worst storm to hit Britain in three decades.
Videos circulating online showed how part of the cover of the Millennium Dome was torn in Greenwich, London. Beneath the tent-like structure erected at the turn of the millennium is the O2 Arena, where music and sporting events are often held. Train services in London have been partially suspended.
A man in his 60s was killed by a falling tree in Palithomas, southeast Ireland, police said.
With winds up to 196 kilometers per hour, Eunice made landfall on the Isle of Wight off the southern coast of England. According to preliminary assessments, this is “the strongest storm ever measured in England,” according to the British Met Office.
For London, the Met Office issued its first red storm warning warning since that designation was introduced in 2011. The British capital looked deserted on Friday.
The highest alert level, which means “risk to life”, was also applied to southeast and southwest England and southern Wales. The Bureau of Meteorology warned of possible blowouts of roofs, uprooting trees and power lines. Flooding was expected along the coasts. Heavy snow has been forecast in Scotland and northern England. Millions of people have been asked to stay at home. Schools in storm areas remained closed.
In southwest England, more than 70,000 homes were without power, the network operator announced. Hundreds of flights were canceled at London airports and ferry services across the English Channel were suspended. In Wales, all trains and buses have stopped running.
In England too, there have been delays and cancellations of bus and train services due to damage to roads, bridges and railways. In London, train services were restricted during the morning rush hour. Many bridges have been closed.
The British Army was put on standby due to the storm. Prime Minister Boris Johnson called on his fellow citizens on Twitter to take precautionary measures and heed the calls of the authorities.
Pictures on the coast “the dumbest thing you can do”
A representative of the British Environment Agency warned against going to the coasts in search of sensational footage. That would be “probably the stupidest thing you can do,” he said.
The Irish Meteorological Agency also issued a storm warning. All schools in the European country remained closed. Electricity was cut off in more than 80,000 homes and shops.
From England, Eunice was supposed to move to Denmark. Trains had to travel there at low speed, and the bridge across the Great Belt was expected to be closed overnight.
Storm arrives in Switzerland on Saturday evening
According to meteorologists, Storm Zeinab is supposed to affect Switzerland only marginally. On Saturday night, gusts of up to 80 kilometers per hour are expected in the lowlands, and hurricanes are blowing in the mountains.
On Friday, in Switzerland, the weather service Meteonews announced that the storm would not feel as intense as in parts of northwestern Europe. So the noticeable effect of the storm in Switzerland is the mild February temperatures. In some places, it was one of the 10 hottest days in February since measurements began, SRF Meteo tweeted.
In Germany, the weather service expects the arrival of the low-lying cyclone on Friday afternoon, which is expected to hit the northern half of the country in particular with winds of more than one hundred kilometers per hour. Deutsche Bahn gradually halted regional and long-distance traffic in northern Germany in the afternoon.
In Germany, three drivers died in Lower Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt on Thursday as a result of the storm, and at least three people died in Poland.
The storm killed at least two people in the Netherlands. In Amsterdam, a person died in a tree fall on Friday afternoon, according to the fire department. In Dimon, east of the capital, a person died after a tree fell on his car. The Meteorological Authority declared the warning level in red. Public life in large parts of the country was paralyzed. There were cancellations and delays at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport.
The movement of trains in Belgium was also affected, and the authorities called on citizens to leave their homes only in urgent cases. In Brittany, in northern France, “Eunice” caused waves up to four meters high and affected regional rail traffic.
Storm Dudley caused traffic chaos and blackouts in Great Britain on Wednesday, but it didn’t cause much damage.
Storm Eunice, as Storm Zeinab was called in Great Britain, is considered one of the fiercest in Great Britain in several decades. The highest wind speed ever measured in England was recorded on the Isle of Wight at around 196 kilometers per hour, according to the Weather Service.
Dozens of flights have been canceled at Heathrow Airport and London City Airport. The port of Dover was closed after a series of ferry services. Several national rail operators have also been advised not to travel. In Wales, train services were completely suspended on Friday.
Storm Dudley – Jelenia in German-speaking countries – has already caused serious disruptions to train traffic in Scotland and northern England on Thursday night. Thousands of homes across northern England were left without power. Ylenia caused a storm in the North Sea.
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