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Red ‘danger to life’ warning issued for London as millions urged to stay at home


A red weather warning has been issued for London and southeast England, with the Met Office warning Storm Eunice will bring “extremely strong winds” that could cause “danger to life”.

Millions of people are being told to stay at home with the rare alert covering the period from 10am to 3pm GMT on Friday.

The rare highest alert – meaning a high impact is very likely – was issued just before 4am and follows a separate red weather warning for the southwest of England issued on Thursday.

>> Follow our live coverage of Storm Eunice

The Met Office warning covering Greater London, Kent, Surrey, Essex and East Sussex states Storm Eunice will cause “significant disruption and dangerous conditions due to extremely strong winds”.

Forecasters said the public in these areas should expect “flying debris resulting in danger to life”, damage to buildings and homes, “with roofs blown off and power lines brought down”, the closure of roads, bridges and railway lines and delays and cancellations to bus, train, ferry services and flights.

The warning also includes power cuts that may affect other services, such as mobile phone coverage, and large waves and beach material “being thrown onto coastal roads, sea fronts and homes”.

Waves hits Porthleven on the Cornish coast as Storm Eunice makes landfall

(PA)

Wind gusts in the most exposed coastal areas could exceed 90mph, the Met Office said, while an amber warning for gusts up to 80mph covers the whole of England from 5am to 9pm.

The earlier red weather warning for the coastline of Devon, Cornwall and Somerset as well as the south coast of Wales starts at 7am and is due to the combination of high tides, strong winds and storm surge.

The Met Office also took the unusual step of issuing a severe weather alert with National Highways for strong winds covering the whole of the country’s strategic road network from 6am to 6pm.

National Highways said high-sided vehicles and other “vulnerable” vehicles such as caravans and motorbikes could be blown over so should avoid bridges and viaducts.

The Met Office has issued two severe weather warnings for wind

(Getty Images)

Those travelling between England and Wales faced difficulties with the closing of the M48 Severn Bridge, while the alternative Prince of Wales bridge was expected to be closed about 6am.

Met Office chief meteorologist Paul Gundersen said: “After the impacts from Storm Dudley for many on Wednesday, Storm Eunice will bring damaging gusts in what could be one of the most impactful storms to affect southern and central parts of the UK for a few years.”

A woman clears snow from her car in Tow Law, County Durham

(PA)

“The red warning areas indicate a significant danger to life as extremely strong winds provide the potential for damage to structures and flying debris.”

Additional reporting by PA

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