[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Tuesday, 11 January, 2005, 23:15 GMT
Two die as storms batter Scotland
Oban sea front as waves pick up in the high winds
Winds of 124mph were recorded
Two drivers were killed and 60,000 people were left without power as gales reached speeds of up to 124mph in Scotland overnight.

A driver was killed when his car was crushed by a lorry blown over on the A1 near Burnmouth on Tuesday evening. The lorry driver suffered minor injuries.

In Tayside, a van driver was killed when his vehicle and a lorry were in collision on the A90 northbound.

The storms have also left thousands of homes without electricity.

Stormy weather

Scottish Hydro Electric, the main power supplier in the north of Scotland, said a total of 60,000 customers had been cut off by the freak weather and some 150 major faults had been reported on the network across Scotland.

A spokesman said: "We have had to stand our repair staff down for the night because it's simply too dangerous for them to work in these high winds."

Many roads in rural areas have been closed and drivers are being urged to take extra care in the high winds.

There's no let up yet as it looks like the severe weather is going to continue until dawn
Forecaster Joanne Grimshaw

The Tay Road, Erskine and Skye bridges were closed while the Forth Road and Kessock bridges were also shut down to high-sided vehicles.

The Western Isles has borne the brunt of the storm with gusts of 124mph recorded on North Rona, while winds reached 105mph on Barra.

But the PA Weather Centre warned the storm would not peak until the early hours of Wednesday.

Forecaster Joanne Grimshaw said: "There's no let up yet as it looks like the severe weather is going to continue until dawn.

"It should peak by daylight and then ease off as the storms move north-eastwards towards Scandinavia."

Flood warning

A spokesman for the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) warned that rain falling on already wet ground could cause river levels to rise rapidly.

CalMac ferry in port
CalMac ferry sailings have been cancelled due to the bad weather

"We would urge those living, working or travelling in areas where flood alerts are in force to remain vigilant and keep up-to-date with the latest flooding information through Floodline," he said.

The ferry company CalMac suspended all its 26 routes between the Scottish islands and the mainland and advised passengers to listen to travel reports, use its website or phone 08457 650050 to find out the most up-to-date information.

P&O also cancelled all its ferries between Scotland and Northern Ireland while NorthLink, which operates services from Aberdeen to Orkney and Shetland, had also confined vessels to dock.

Trains will also be affected. First Scotrail have warned they may not be able to operate early morning services because lines will have to be checked for obstructions before trains can run.

All schools and council offices in the Western Isles are to close on Wednesday for safety reasons.

All routine operations and non-urgent procedures at Western Isles Hospital in Stornoway scheduled for Wednesday have been postponed.

  • How has the severe weather affected you? Send us digital pictures of the gales and rain in your part of the country. E-mail them to newsonlinescotland@bbc.co.uk


  • SEE ALSO:
    Chances of flooding 'rising fast'
    10 Jan 05 |  Scotland
    Stricken ferry refloated by tugs
    09 Jan 05 |  Northern Ireland
    Severe weather batters Scotland
    08 Jan 05 |  Scotland
    New centre to combat landslides
    08 Oct 04 |  Scotland


    RELATED BBC LINKS:

    RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
    The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


    PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

    News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
    UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
    Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
    Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific