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Danger to life now ‘likely’ as experts issue new Storm Francis weather warnings
August 25, 2020
The Met Office has upgraded the Storm Francis weather warning to amber as it admits danger to life “is likely”.
It upped the initial yellow warning to amber for much of Wales and large swathes of England.
Forecasters said the main threat will be brutal 75mph gusts which could blow trees over and cause power cuts.
And weather experts said some communities could be cut off by flooded roads.
Storm Francis has already wreaked havoc across the UK as it blew in overnight.
Rescuers were called to the River Taff after two people entered the water – including a canoeist.
And in a separate incident a woman was saved after she waded into the River Ely in Cardiff to rescue her dog.
Yellow warnings remain in place for most of the UK as hazardous winds pose a more serious threat in central England and Wales.
A months worth of rain is expected to fall during a 36-hour blitz that will see coastal towns battered by flying tides.
The Met Office said: "A spell of very strong winds will develop across much of Wales and a large swathe of central England during Tuesday before easing from the west during Tuesday evening.
"Gusts are likely to widely reach 50-55mph inland with some sites seeing 60-65mph.
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"Exposed coastal locations in the west and some higher ground inland may see gusts to 70mph at times."
An amber weather warning means injuries and danger to life is likely "from large waves and beach material being thrown onto coastal roads, sea fronts and properties".
The Met Office warned longer journey times and cancellations could affect travel, while some roads and bridges are likely to close.
And blackouts could also take place with a risk from flying debris, forecasters warned.
The unsettled conditions are being caused by a deep area of low pressure which crossed the UK on Monday night.
The Met Office said some locations have already seen their highest ever gusts for August.
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Lake Vyrnwy in Wales saw 74mph winds hammer the the area today, Tuesday.
Chief Meteorologist Steve Ramsdale, said “Storm Francis arrived early on Tuesday morning, bringing another spell of wet and windy weather for the UK over the next few days.
“Wind speeds this strong are unusual during August and may come as a surprise to people spending time outdoors trying to catch the last few days of summer.
“A number of severe weather warnings have been issued and these warnings can be updated regularly so please keep up to date with the latest Met Office forecast.”
RAC Breakdown spokesman Rod Dennis added: “Until the middle of Wednesday, drivers need to brace themselves for some very unpleasant conditions on the roads.
“An amber weather warning covering a swathe of western Britain means there is a real risk of disruption to journeys from flying debris such as tree branches. Surface spray and perhaps some localised flooding are also possible.”
It is hoped the storm will clear to the east of the UK by lunchtime on Wednesday, opening up for a bright and clear Bank holiday weekend.
Some showers are predicted for Friday but Brits can look forward to sunshine on Saturday and Sunday in most parts, with some scattered rainfall.