‘Immediate action’ flood warnings, winds topping 100mph… and snow arriving
Written by on 27 December 2020
Huge swathes of the UK are continuing to battle floods after Storm Bella brought driving rain and winds – and the onslaught isn’t ending, with warnings of snow and ice ahead for as far south as London.
Pictures from Killin in Stirlingshire on Sunday showed some snow had already settled on the streets and surrounding hills.
In England, more than a hundred “immediate action” flood warnings are in place, after winds of over 70mph hit southern coasts overnight.
There has been some “fairly major weather”, Sky News presenter Jo Wheeler said, adding that torrential rain brought by Storm Bella had created an extra risk of flooding.
In North Yorkshire, fire crews rescued a number of people from vehicles stranded in floodwater overnight.
At 12.37am on Sunday, North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service used a boat to rescue two men and two dogs from a vehicle stuck in flowing floodwater in Hawes.
In Aysgarth, a man and woman were also rescued by boat from the roof of their car at 2.40am after they drove into deep floodwater.
In the south, Great Western Railway said all trains between Bournemouth and Southampton Central were stopped because of water on the line.
One of the major lines into London was blocked when a tree fell on to the tracks in Haslemere, Surrey.
Parts of Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire have also been badly affected, with some people forced to evacuate their homes due to the floods.
Drone shots show flooding in Bedford
On Saturday night, a maximum wind speed of 106mph (170kmh) was recorded at the Needles lighthouse on the Isle of Wight.
Aberdaron in north Wales saw gusts of up to 83mph (133kmh), while winds reached the mid-70s in many southern coastal areas.
Wheeler said there would be “ongoing impacts from Storm Bella as rivers continue to rise”, with 115 “immediate action required” flood warnings in place across England on Sunday morning.
Caravan site residents forced to sleep in their cars
Two severe “danger to life” flood warnings are also in force in Northamptonshire – at Cogenhoe Mill caravan site and on the River Nene near Billing Aquadrome.
The wild weather should ease however. A Met Office amber warning for wind, covering Wales and southern England, ended at 9am on Sunday.
Rain should also clear through the morning and winds will become lighter from the west.
Looking ahead, the Met Office has three yellow warnings for snow and ice for Scotland, Northern Ireland and northern England, covering two different time periods, until 10am on Monday.
Scotland is likely to see “persistent rain, sleet and snow” on Sunday evening, with 5 to 10cm of snow by Monday morning on higher ground, and up to 3cm at lower levels.
There could also be a slight covering of snow for the Chilterns, the Cotswolds and possibly the Salisbury plains.
Later on Monday, rain, sleet and snow will move across the Midlands towards the London area.
The Environment Agency has asked people to keep away from swollen rivers and flooded land, while Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick urged people to heed their advice.