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Weather warning in place as storm batters Cornwall
Updated 10:22am Tuesday 24th December 2013 in News
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Devon and Cornwall Police are continuing to monitor the severe weather today.
Further wind and rain is expected to intensify across the region from 7pm. This will see heavy rain and further high winds until the early hours of tomorrow.
Environment Agency Flood Warnings exist on rivers across Devon and Cornwall and large waves are expected to hit the region’s coastline, particularly at high tide.
Motorists are asked to drive according to road conditions and slow speeds. Surface water is likely to be a particular hazard, as is road spray. Headlamps should be dipped and fog lights turned off.
Drivers should also not attempt to drive through flood water which is likely to be impassable and also take extra care if driving on coastal roads where sea waves and spray may be a hazard.
The A387 is closed at the junction of the B3254 at Sandplace by Polraen due to flooding. It is likely to stay... http://t.co/wk7hqGNYH5— @EdwinaHannaford 23 December 2013
RT @AASORT: The number of flood related calls has increased significantly since the fall of darkness! please #ThinkDontSink http://t.co/w6…— @packet_peter 23 December 2013
RT @EnvAgency: Please share: 30cm of flowing water can move a car. #ThinkDontSink #floodaware #UKStorm http://t.co/U2CY1M75mc— @DJGenerator 23 December 2013
An elderly couple had to be rescued by firefighters near Bissoe this afternoon after getting trapped in flood water.
Their car was stuck in approxmimately two to three feet of water, just before 4.15pm.
Firefighters from Truro, Falmouth, Camborne and St Austell were sent out, but on arrival found that the car had already been towed out of the water.
RT @DSFireUpdates: 60+ weather-related calls taken so far today, including 7 rescues of motorists from #floodwater. See @EnvAgencySW for la…— @EnvAgencySW 23 December 2013
Around 3,000 homes in Cornwall are now said to be without power this afternoon as a result of the stormy weather.
Western Power Distribution has said it is working to restore supplies, with the hope that homes will be back on by 11pm.
There appears to be swell lines on Loe Pool this afternoon! #cornwallstorm— @SWCornwallNT 23 December 2013
RT @wpduk: Update: Due to present weather conditions we are estimating to restore supplies in the South West by 2300 hrs. We are sorry for …— @MilesBetter_GGS 23 December 2013
Firefighters across Cornwall have been kept busy with reports of flooding and electricity related incidents.
At around 12.30pm a fire engine from St. Just attended a property at Carn Bosavern, where water was entering through the roof, and crews made the area safe.
At 1.40pm the fire service received a call from The Wharf in St Ives, where a property was approximately two feet deep in flood water, and a portable pump was used to clear the premises.
Firefighters were also called to give general assistance to people at a domestic property that was flooded in Looe.
A fire crew from Penzance was called to Gears Lane in Goldsithney to reports of a cable arcing at around 1.30pm, and found a transformer, that had previously been on fire, to be extinguished.
A crew was also called just after 2pm to a report of an electric pole near Rosudgeon that had burnt through.
In both these incidents the crew stood by until the arrival of Western Power.
Helston Railway has been forced to cancel its fifth Santa Special due to the bad weather today.
A spokesperson described today's event - which would have seen youngsters taken a ride on one of the restored trains near Prospidnick and meeting Santa - as a "washout".
Writing on the railway's Facebook group the spokesperson said: "We had a few intrepid people this morning (thanks for coming) - but the high winds and the torrential rain have meant we have had to close, safety must come first.
"So sorry if you had booked and you didn't get to see Santa but it was unavoidable. Best wishes from some bedraggled and windswept elves..."
A power cut has been reported in Redruth. Western Power has apologised and said there is a team working on the issue, with hopes to restore power by 6pm.
Trelissick Garden near Feock has closed to the public today due to the stormy weather.
A notice on the Nationl Trust attraction's website reads: "Due to severe weather conditions we have unfortunately had to close the entire property today including the woodland walks.
"Please see our website for more updates tomorrow. We take our staff and public's safety seriously and apologize for any convenience caused."
Do you have any stories or photos of weather damage or problems caused by the wind and rain? Contact news editor Emma Ferguson on 01326 213341 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Traffic is being stopped from entering parts of Helston due to reports of a loose power cable near to the library. More when we get it.
The B3298 at Scorrier is blocked due to a fallen tree on the A3047 near the Fox & Hounds.
Trelowarren Street in Camborne, the A3047, is closed due to roof slates in the road around Rosewarne Road. Police have closed the road because of an unsafe building.
RT @DelicateTradeJ: Tree down on road from redruth to Falmouth http://t.co/ud3tw5rhFC— @kernowweather 23 December 2013
The view of stormy-seas in #Porthleven - just up from my house. #cornwall #StaySafe http://t.co/M1dWjMHwrc— @CllrAWallis 23 December 2013
Many reports of fallen trees & debris on roads. Be prepared to stop, give yourself extra braking time. Think what could be round the corner!— @newquaysarge 23 December 2013
Cornwall Council has closed a section of the South West Coast Path between Talland and Hannafore in Looe following safety concerns.
The path has been closed as a precaution following an inspection by the Council’s Soils Engineer which revealed a number of tension cracks and the potential for a landslide in the area.
A temporary signed diversion around the closure is in place for coastal walkers and the temporary closure will be reviewed in the New Year.
If you're walking at Penrose today, please take care, there are branches and trees coming down as I type.— @SWCornwallNT 23 December 2013
Penwethers Lane in Truro is blocked around the A390 Highertown junction, because of a fallen tree.
The B3303 in Crowntown is blocked near the B3302 junction, because of a fallen tree.
The road blocked earlier on the A393 in Gwennap, near to the B3298 junction, because of an earlier fallen tree has now cleared.
With Met Office forecasts of more strong winds and heavy rain affecting Cornwall over the 24 hours, Cornwall Council is warning residents to be prepared and take precautions where necessary.
The latest information from the MET Office and the Environment Agency is for gale force winds and heavy rainfall to affect Cornwall during the rest of today and into the early hours of Tuesday morning.
Rainfall levels of between 40 and 80 mm are currently predicted, with two pulses of heavy rain due to move through Cornwall – the first between noon and 3pm and the second between 6pm and 10pm.
Gusts of wind of between 70 to 80 mph are also possible around exposed coasts.
There is an amber weather warning in place, with the likelihood of river and surface water flooding as the rain falls on saturated ground.
There are currently seven flood alerts in place for rivers across Cornwall and the Environment Agency is advising people living in areas at risk of flooding to take precautions.
Officers from Cornwall Council’s Highways, Environment, Fire and Rescue and Emergency Management services are monitoring the situation closely and are on standby to deal with any problems.
Agencies are asking people to follow the advice on dealing with the potential severe weather, and are warning people not to drive through flood water. Over the past few days a number of people had to be rescued from their cars after driving though floodwater. Driving through flood water can also create waves which can then affect properties.
The council is also advising people to avoid walking along the coast path and by cliff edges during the strong winds.
During November’s flooding a number of householders reported difficulties in obtaining sandbags when the severe weather affected their local area. As neither the council nor the Environment Agency has a statutory duty to provide sandbags, anyone whose property is prone to flooding should ensure they have a supply of sandbags ready to protect their home or business should they need to.
Local communities are also encouraged to check with vulnerable neighbours in case they need help with obtaining flood protection materials.
Sandbags can be obtained from builders merchants, DIY and hardware stores. Anyone who is unsure if their property is at risk can check on the environment agency website www.environment-agency.gov.uk or call the floodline on 0845 988 1188.
Anyone with responsibility for community Christmas lights and decorations should ensure they are properly secured against strong winds and consider turning off Christmas lights if the weather deteriorates. The council has also advised checking for any damp or damage before turning them back on. Any problems should be dealt with by a qualified electrician.
For further advice on preparing for flooding visit the environment agency website www.environment-agency.gov.uk or the Cornwall Council website at www.cornwall.gov.uk/flooding
If you're at risk of #flooding, switch off power if you can safely do it. We advise you check with an electrician to make sure of safety.— @RichfordsSW 23 December 2013
RT @Bosinver: RT @MusselShack: Spread the word... King Harry Ferry is NOT running today. Even the hardened ferrymen have their limits #Corn…— @MaggieMac42 23 December 2013
The B3300 in Portreath is partially blocked in both directions between the Tolticken Hill junction and the Old Portreath Road junction, because of a fallen tree.
The A393 in Gwennap is blocked near to the B3298 junction, because of a fallen tree.
Approximately 360 homes on the Lizard Peninsula are without power this morning.
A spokesperson for Western Power Distribution said power went out at around 8am today.
Engineers are in the area working to fix the problem and are expected to be joined by more staff this morning.
The spokesperson added that it was not possible to say when the power would be restored, but it was hoped this morning.
Strong winds and heavy rain are causing chaos on the roads and trains this morning, with conditions expected to worsen as the day goes on.
The current weather forecast indicates that winds with guests of more than 70mph are expected in some parts of the south west and southern England, with heavy rain adding to the disruption.
This is expected to continue into the early hours of Christmas Eve.
As a result of the forecast – and in particular the expected strong winds – Network Rail has this morning announced that it will be imposing a speed restriction on many of the routes over which First Great Western operate.
First Great Western's high speed services are expected to be severely affected by the restriction, along with other branch line and mainline services. A spokesperson said: “Journey times on all routes will be significantly extended.”
In a bid to avoid extensive disruption later, customers holding tickets for departures after midday today, and those dated for travel tomorrow, are able to travel on earlier services if they wish.
However, passengers have been warned that in most cases these trains are expected to be very busy and a seat cannot be guaranteed.
Where customers have been delayed getting to the station, or on other train operators services, and have missed their booked First Great Western service, they will be allowed to travel on the next service, irrespective of the type of ticket held.
Elsewhere the St Mawes Passenger Ferry has cancelled all sailing between St Mawes and Falmouth, with the King Harry Ferry at Trelissick also cancelled.
There are currently no significant problems reported at Newquay Airport.
The Met Office has issued with south west with an amber weather warning, with a spell of heavy rainfall expected.
A spokesperson said: "This will fall onto saturated ground and lead to a risk of some flooding. Gale to severe gale force winds will be an added hazard, with the potential for very strong gusts across coastal areas.
"The public should be prepared for the likelihood of some significant disruption due to the combined hazards of heavy rainfall and high winds."
Rain is expected to die out tomorrow and winds to moderate, with no weather warnings in place for Christmas Day.
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