Almost 10,000 homes are without power as Storm Emma wreaks havoc across Britain.03 March 2018
Western Power Distribution reported power outages in the Midlands, south west of England and Wales on Friday evening as freezing conditions continue to cause severe disruption throughout the UK.
A yellow severe weather warning for snow and ice is in place, while the Environment Agency has issued 15 flood warnings and 36 flood alerts for coastal areas in the south west and north east of England.
The RAC warned freezing rain could pose a threat to drivers as roads continued to be blocked by stranded vehicles.
It came as London’s trains went into meltdown with three of the south’s major rail firms warning passengers not to travel as they cancelled evening services. The chaos sparked mutiny by Southeastern commuters who fled trains outside Lewisham after they were stranded for three hours due to frozen tracks.
Southeastern called in British Transport Police and the fire service to help round up customers who took to the tracks.
Meanwhile the UK’s freezing cold snap continued to cause disruption on roads, with the south west and northern England experiencing the worst conditions. Police forces throughout the country have urged people to travel only if necessary. The M62 is closed until at least midnight due to high winds and HGVs that were stranded overnight, Highways England said. Road closures are also in place on the A303 in southern England, the A1 in Northumberland and the transpennine routes of the A628 and A66.
More than 100 cars were stranded on the A505 near Luton on Friday evening, according to Hertfordshire Police. And a number of crashes were reported on the M20 in Kent due to black ice. One driver reported seeing three crashes on the road in a short space of time.
Highways England's head of road safety Richard Leonard said: "We are encouraging road users, particularly in the south west, Pennine areas and Northumberland, to drive only if it's necessary.
"Anyone thinking of using the roads should be advised to keep their distance and reduce speed, because even in conditions that seem normal, and the snow is not settling, it can be slippery if ice patches have formed, or where fresh grit has not been worked into the carriageway." The Met Office issued a further yellow severe weather warning for ice on Saturday morning across great swathes of the country.
It warned of further outbreaks of sleet or snow in parts of Wales, central and eastern England.