This is the shocking moment strong winds caused a lorry to topple over and crush a police car, as severe weather conditions lashed parts of the country yesterday with rain and gusts of up to 100mph.
A yellow wind warning was issued across much of England and Scotland on Tuesday, with forecasters warning that strong gusts are likely to cause delays on the rail networks and roads for rush-hour commuters.
It was previously thought that the weather would bring Storm Brendan to the shores of the UK but the Met Office said there would not be enough of an impact from the winds to warrant a storm name.
Despite their being no officially named storm, horrified staff in a traffic control room could only watch helplessly as a crash on the busy A1 in storm-force winds yesterday almost ended in the tragic death of a sergeant.
The incident happened on the road between Haddington and Dunbar in Scotland when a police BMW estate car was diverting traffic away from the outside lane after a lorry had already been blown over on the road.
Suddenly without warning an HGV passing the police car was blown across the road and toppled over crushing the police vehicle.
Chief Supt Stewart Carle Tweeted:’Sgt Eason was as cool as a cucumber – he called on the radio – we need to close the A1 now. A lorry has just landed on my patrol car. And I just polished it yesterday.’
The Supt added that he ‘nearly spilt my mug of tea’ but admitted he was quickly reassured when told the BMW was five-years old.
Inclement weather is set to continue today with a severe weather warning for ice across parts of Scotland. It warns of icy patches likely to develop during the night as frequent blustery, heavy showers of rain and hail fall onto cold surfaces, especially untreated roads and pavements.
The incident happened on the road between Haddington and Dunbar in Scotland when a police BMW estate car was diverting traffic away from the outside lane after a lorry had already been blown over on the road
Two lorries were blown over by the wind as bad weather swept across Scotland on Tuesday morning. The HGVs were travelling along the A1 when the incident happened between Innerwick and Skateraw in East Lothian at around 7.45am, leaving the road blocked in both directions
Suddenly without warning an HGV passing the police car on the A1 in East Lothian, Scotland was blown across the road and toppled over crushing the police vehicle
The scene at Fassett Road in south London, where a crane partially collapsed on a building site. The crane appears to have fallen on to a housing development of one to three bedroom apartments
The incident took place at around 4.30pm at the Kingston University Penrhyn Road campus development in Kingston upon Thames, South West London
Workers deal with major flooding on the M8 motorway near the Kingston Bridge, Glasgow. Yellow weather warnings are in place for wind and rain across the north of England and southern Scotland, and the Met Office has also issued a severe weather warning for ice across parts of Scotland today and tomorrow
The Met Office has issued a yellow wind warning across much of England and Scotland, with very strong gusts expected – potentially causing transport delays
Strong winds yesterday also saw a crane collapse onto a building site in Greater London. The incident took place at around 4.30pm close to the Kingston University Penrhyn Road campus development.
The Student Union said that parts of the area were being evacuated as a result of the collapsed crane, while the fire brigade said it had sent two fire engines and two fire rescue units to the scene.
Kingston University said the collapse had taken place on a private site, not at one of its developments. Images appear to show part of the crane having fallen on a residential development.
Police say there are no reported injuries and that a number of local residents have been evacuated as a precaution.
A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said: ‘Emergency services on the scene. At this early stage, there are no reported injuries. A number of local residents have been evacuated as a precaution.’
The area where the crane collapsed is close to a building site where earlier this year people were evacuated after an unexploded WWII bomb was discovered.
Kingston University Faculty Support Officer Helen Miller told the Surrey Comet: ‘There are fire engines and police cars there and they have cordoned the road off now.’
Elsewhere, the A83 at Ardgarten in Argyll and Bute was partially blocked because of a fallen tree and was closed for nearly two hours.
The Tay Road Bridge was only open to cars and the central walkway was closed because of the high winds and heavy rain, which also hit rail services.
Waves coming over the sea wall at Saltcoats, North Ayrshire, affected railway power lines, causing trains between Kilwinning and Largs and Ardrossan to be cancelled.
Flooding closed the line between Craigendoran and Helensburgh. Dundee City Council’s headquarters were also closed due to a power failure.
The South West of England and Wales were hit with gales of up to 70mph over the weekend after Storm Atiyah first hit Ireland on Sunday.
Met Office Meteorologist Alex Burkill, said Tuesday was going to be a ‘wet and windy’ day for most of the UK but they were not expecting a second storm.
Drivers try to drive through flooding which has hit Rutherglen in Glasgow this afternoon
West Bay is pounded by waves and high winds as night falls. The Dorset Coast was issued with a flood alert as a large tidal surge with an unusually high peak level of 5.95 meters is expected
There are already strong winds along the coast in Blackpool today, where early morning walkers braved the gales and rain
High winds and rain are battering Saltcoats Promenade in Scotland today
Commuters wrapped up and shielded themselves from the downpour on the Strand in central London this morning
It was a bleak and damp start to the day in London, with the outlook remaining similarly dismal for the rest of the afternoon
Commuters today have been warned of strong winds and rain today, likely to cause disruption
It was previously thought that Tuesday would bring Storm Brendan to the shores of the UK but the Met Office said there will not be enough of an impact from Tuesday’s winds to warrant a storm name.
Mr Burkill said: ‘Many parts of the UK, particularly in the North West, will get off to a wet and windy start.
‘The greatest impacts from the winds look to be from southern Scotland, Northern Ireland, northern Wales and northern England, so quite a big patch. We can see gusts of 50 to 60 miles per hour up to 70 in parts.
‘Despite the wind and rain, it is going to be a remarkably mild day. There will be highs of 13C (55.4F) to 14C (57.2F) and that is quite a few degrees above average.’
Will the severe weather affect election turnout?
The prospect of the first winter election since 1974 has led to speculation that conditions could affect turnout, although suggest that the weather has little impact.
A 2007 University of Chicago study found voter turnout decreased by 1 per cent for every extra inch of rain. But research in 2013 from Gothenburg University in Sweden found no link between rain and turnout.
Another study by Oxford University found no connection between weather and how many people voted. Instead, it concluded how close the election race was and how clear the differences were between the parties’ policies was more likely to have an influence.
Polls show the Tory lead over Labour has narrowed to eight points, while Brexit remains the defining issue when voters make their decision in three days’ time.
Speaking before the 2017 General Election, Stephen Fisher, an associate professor of political sociology at Oxford University, said: ‘There’s basically no correlation between the weather and turnout.’
Chris Curtis, political manager at YouGov, said: ‘Most of the evidence shows that weather actually has quite a small effect on turnout and factors such as how close the election is perceived to be and how different the parties’ positions are normally have more of an impact.’
The weather for the February 1974 election was bad but turnout was 79 per cent, compared to 71 per cent for Labour’s ‘landslide’ victory in May 1997 when temperatures were in the mid-20s.
Four years later, turnout was just 59 per cent – attributed to a comfortable Labour win being expected and policies that were not particularly distinct from the Conservatives’.
Mr Burkill added that the worst of the rain will clear over the next two days, but most places will see ‘quite a drop’ in temperature between Tuesday and Wednesday.
Temperatures will sink to 9C (48.2F) on Wednesday, a drop of about 4C (7.2F) from today’s expected temperature.
Mr Burkill also gave a forecast ahead of Thursday’s General Election.
‘It looks like there will be wind and rain for most places,’ he said, adding that central and southern parts of England were most likely to be hit with the rain.
Small amounts of sleet and snow are also expected in the highest parts of Scotland, with highest national temperatures of between 10C (50F) and 11C (51.8F).
The Needles on the Isle of Wight has already been hit by 83mph gusts as the south west and Wales were buffered by gales after the storm swept in from Ireland, where it disrupted transport and power networks.
Western Power Distribution said it had experienced 26 high voltage faults in the south-west on Sunday and two in Wales, leading to 5,500 customers being cut off from power over the course of the day.
In the South West, Coastsafe, a partnership campaign aiming to improve coastline safety, urged people to be wary of tidal surges and debris being thrown over sea walls during the storm.
By Thursday, parts of the UK could be drenched by close to an inch of rain in the 24-hour period covering election day. Areas along the west coast of England and Scotland are due heavy showers and blustery wind.
The band of showers moving across the country on Thursday will deposit around a third of an inch of rain throughout the day in most of England and Wales, although East Anglia should be largely dry.
Temperatures will be -3C (27F) in Braemar, Aberdeenshire, when polling stations open at 7am, with -1C (30F) in the north and 0C (32F) in the south.
Daytime highs will reach 11C (52F) in Plymouth, 5C (41F) in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and 7C in Glasgow (45F). Mrs Smith advised voters: ‘Wrap up warm and take waterproofs and an umbrella.’
High winds put paid to sailings between Ardrossan and Brodick, Barra to Eriskay, Oban to Castlebay, Tayinloan to Gigha, Tarbert to Portavadie and all services from Mallaig.
Met Office figures show 3in (78.4mm) of rain fell at Achnagart in Ross-shire, between midday on Saturday and midday yesterday. By contrast, only 2in (56mm) fell in Ross and Cromarty during most of November.
** Have you taken any photographs of the windy weather today? Please email: [email protected] **
It was previously thought that Tuesday would bring Storm Brendan to the shores of the UK but the Met Office said there will not be enough of an impact from Tuesday’s winds to warrant a storm name. But this graphic today shows snow is expected to fall in higher ground
Storm Atiyah helps UK smash wind power record – generating 16 gigawatts of energy in just half an hour and accounting for HALF of all the electricity in the country on Sunday
By Joe Pinkstone for MailOnline
Storm Atiyah swept across the UK at the weekend and caused severe disruption, but the National Grid has now revealed it helped the UK set a new wind power record.
Wind farms generated more than 16 gigawatts of power in Britain during a half hour window for the first time on Sunday evening, official figures reveal.
That equates to five times the output expected from the new Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant.
Over the day as a whole, wind supplied 43.7 per cent of British electricity due to strong gusts, while nuclear generated 20.5 per cent, gas supplied 12.8 per cent and biomass 7.9 per cent.
The British grid also got 7.4 per cent of its power from imports, 3.1 per cent from coal and smaller amounts from hydro, solar, storage and other sources.
The maximum output was recorded between 5pm and 5:30pm GMT.
Wind farms generated more than 16 gigawatts of power in Britain for the first time on Sunday evening, figures revealed. Over the day as a whole, wind supplied 43.7 per cent of British electricity due to strong gusts (file photo)
Industry body RenewableUK’s Luke Clark said: ‘This new British clean energy record is a great early Christmas present, and shows just how important wind is in an energy system that’s changing rapidly.
‘On a dark cold Sunday when we need it most, wind was providing more than 40 per cent of our power, far more than any other source of electricity.
‘Wind energy is at the heart of our modern power system, enabling us to take practical action against dangerous climate change’.
The previous wind energy record of 15.32 gigawatts was set on February 8 this year.
ESO and National grid tweeted about the landmark moment, which marks the first time wind power has topped 16 gigawatts in a half hour period in Britain
Extra power on the network on Sunday meant National Grid paid some households to use electricity, as it was cheaper than paying the operators of wind turbines to stop them generating.
At one point on Sunday night, customers on Octopus Energy’s agile pricing tariff got as much as 5p per unit of power.
Their smart meters would have connected up once prices were low.
‘It is remarkable that electric vehicle owners on such tariffs would have been paid to charge their cars,’ said Robert Cheesewright, at Smart Energy GB.
‘At Octopus we are increasingly seeing those on our agile smart meter tariff tweak their daily routines to push their usage into these cheap, off-peak and renewable-heavy hours,’ said Octopus chief executive Greg Jackson.
Experts say that this will become more common as customers charge their cars overnight using cheap, or even free, renewable electricity, and some will sell it back to the grid the next day.