Storm Jocelyn hits UK with 71mph gusts and trains suspended in Scotland

Storm Jocelyn hits UK with 71mph gusts and trains suspended in Scotland thumbnail

Workers remove a tree that fell on an electricity substation on the Kinnaird estate in Larbert during Storm Isha (Andrew Milligan/PA)

PA Wire

Storm Jocelyn has hit the UK with 71mph gusts and major disruption to transport services expected.

No trains will operate in Scotland after 7pm as the severe weather arrives, while drivers are being advised to postpone journeys, not park near trees and eight flights have already been cancelled arriving and departing from Dublin Airport.

The storm is expected to become worse in some areas early on Wednesday morning – with a possibility of weather warnings being extended through rush hour, the Met Office said.

This comes shortly after Storm Isha left two people dead and one seriously injured.

Thousands of people remain affected by power cuts, while flooding is affecting parts of York.

The Met Office has issued amber and yellow weather warnings for wind covering much of the UK, together with yellow warnings for rain covering parts of western and southern Scotland, and north-west England.

A yellow warning for ice has also been issued across northern and eastern parts of Scotland.

Gusts of 80mph could be experienced in exposed areas, with 40-50mm of rain possible over higher ground, the forecaster said.

Meanwhile, winds as high as 71mph have already been recorded in Lake Vyrnwy, Powys, on Tuesday as the storm builds, with gusts of 67mph in Aberdaron, Gwynedd, and 64mph in Needles, Isle of Wight.

Parts of Cumbria have already seen 68mm of rainfall on Tuesday, while parts of Wales have had 50mm.

And while the storm will start to get worse on Tuesday evening in western Scotland, the Western Isles and northern Scotland, the storm will increase again in the north-east of Scotland overnight into Wednesday morning, the Met Office added.

Met Office chief meteorologist Steve Willington said Storm Jocelyn, named by Met Eireann, could cause more disruption than Storm Isha.

He said: “Although this system will be a step down relative to Storm Isha, with the damage and clean-up still under way, we could potentially see more impacts from Storm Jocelyn.

Wind gusts are expected to reach 55 to 65mph across north-western Scotland while there is potential for winds to reach 75 to 80mph in a few places, in particular exposed parts of the Western Isles and coastal north-west Scotland early on Wednesday morning.”

Further transport disruption is expected on Tuesday after services had largely recovered on Monday.

Martin Thomson, national operations manager for resilience at Transport Scotland, said: “Across the wider network, we can expect to see more delays and cancellations with ferries, flights and rail from Tuesday into Wednesday morning.”

Liam Sumpter, route director for Network Rail Scotland, said Storm Isha caused “a huge amount of damage” and teams have been working “around the clock” to remove fallen tress and debris, and repair damaged infrastructure.

He went on: “While we are continuing to reopen routes when it is safe to do so, we unfortunately expect even more disruption in the coming days as Storm Jocelyn arrives in Scotland.

“If you’re planning on travelling by train this week, please check the status of your journey with your train operator.

“We’re also urging lineside neighbours to make sure that garden furniture and equipment is secure as in high winds, this can blow on to the railway, causing damage and disruption.”

Avanti West Coast urged passengers not to travel north of Preston after 3.30pm on Tuesday.

Services to and from Scotland are expected to be suspended until at least noon on Wednesday.

Road journeys are also likely to be affected by the storm.

RAC spokesperson Alice Simpson said: “With so much heavy rainfall and debris on the roads, driving conditions will be very challenging, especially across northern parts of the country where the weather is at its worst.

“Visibility will be severely reduced due to the spray from lorries and other large vehicles, and the amount of water on the roads will increase stopping distances.

“We urge drivers to consider postponing their journeys in these areas if at all possible.

“We also suggest drivers avoid parking underneath or near to trees.”

Meanwhile, parts of York were affected by flooding.

River and surface water flooding is probable in parts of the north of England on Tuesday with river flooding possible into Wednesday, the Environment Agency said.

River flooding is also possible in York and along parts of the upper River Severn in Shropshire until Friday.

The number of flood warnings – meaning flooding was expected – had reached 15 in England and 17 in Scotland.

The Met Office said the highest recorded windspeed during Storm Isha was 99mph at Brizlee Wood in Northumberland, with gusts of 90mph at Capel Curig in Snowdonia on Sunday.

A 26-year-old man was in a critical condition on Monday night after his car hit a tree on a road in Northumberland, police said.

An 84-year-old man died after the car in which he was a front seat passenger crashed into a fallen tree in Grangemouth, Falkirk, Police Scotland said.

And a man in his 60s was killed in a crash involving two vans and a fallen tree in Limavady, Co Londonderry, on Sunday night, the Police Service of Northern Ireland said.

Tens of thousands of homes suffered power cuts due to Storm Isha.

Some 4,900 people were still without power in Britain as of 10am on Tuesday, mainly in the north of England and the south of Scotland, the Energy Networks Association said.

In Northern Ireland, around 7,000 customers were without power.