England

Gale-force winds hamper clean-up in the South West

  • 8 June 2012
  • From the section England
Tinside Swimming Pool
Image caption Tinside Lido on Plymouth Hoe has been almost submerged by the sea

Winds of up to 50mph (80km/h) have hit parts of the South West, hampering attempts to clear up damage caused by storms on Thursday.

Uprooted trees have brought down power cables and Western Power Distribution engineers are working to restore power to about 120 homes across the region.

A spokesperson from the Met Office said the gale-force winds have started to ease in the South West.

Meanwhile, coastguards have criticised "wave dodgers" for risking their lives.

Jeremy Lynn, from Brixham Coastguard, said: "Playing with the waves is not a good idea.

"If the waves do catch you they will drag you off the sea wall or beach and take you out to sea."

Almost submerged

The severe weather has continued to cause some travel disruption, with a number of road closures and cancelled ferry services.

The outdoor pool at Tinside Lido on Plymouth Hoe has been almost submerged by the sea.

It should have opened on 1 June for the summer season, but that was delayed because of an algal bloom in Plymouth Sound.

The city council said: "The pool will have to be drained entirely, cleaned out and then refilled before the public will be able to use it."

The Taw Bridge in Barnstaple has been closed to high-sided vehicles.

Lester Willmington, from highways and traffic management in Devon, said the decision was taken after winds gusting up to 60mph (95km/h) were expected.

Elsewhere, a French fishing vessel which got into difficulties in rough seas after complete engine failure on Thursday night, near the Eddystone Rocks, has been towed into Plymouth by the RNLI all-weather lifeboat.

On Thursday evening a 40ft clipper yacht drifted on to rocks at St Mawes in Cornwall. No-one was on board.

Devon County Council said since the onset of the severe weather, its teams had cleared between 80 and 100 fallen trees.

Cornwall Council said it had cleared six fallen trees in the county.

The Environment Agency still has a number of flood alerts on rivers and some coastal areas of the South West.

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