Rain and gales batter Devon and Cornwall
- 22 November 2012
- From the section England
The worst of the rain and gales in Devon and Cornwall, which caused damage to buildings and bridges, travel disruption and a canal breach, have moved away into neighbouring Somerset.
BBC forecasters though are warning more heavy rain is on the way on Saturday.
Part of Plymouth city centre was cordoned off earlier because of tiles falling off a building.
Police in Cornwall were urging people not to drive unless necessary because of torrential downpours.
BBC weather forecaster Emily Wood said: "The winds are easing for tonight after some extremely strong gusts. It will be calmer later and tomorrow.
"There is another area of low pressure developing which looks like it will bring more wet weather later on Saturday and overnight into Sunday."
Devon and Cornwall Police said the tiles came off the city's job centre in Exeter Street and that the street and neighbouring Bretonside were being closed off because of concerns about other sheets.
Flooding was reported in several areas of the city, including Gdynia Way, Forder Valley Road, Lipson Vale and Honicknowle Lane.
Earlier this evening in Colebrook, Plympton, residents said they were told the fire service was not able to get out to the area immediately to help affected households because of the number of other incidents it was dealing with.
On Dartmoor, a 40ft (12m) long temporary building at Becky Falls was picked up by the wind and left resting on a hedge across a road.
The Environment Agency issued 35 flood warnings and 56 flood alerts across the South West and warned heavy rain could lead to further flooding during the evening.
Twenty homes were evacuated after water breached the 200-year-old Grand Western Canal at Halberton, Devon.
Police closed the road through Halberton while work to dam and stabilise the canal was carried out by Devon County Council.
Earlier in Plymouth, high winds affected loose sheet metal on a roof near the city's railway station.
Only pedestrians could access the station and vehicles were turned away for a while before the roof was later secured, First Great Western said.
Police said one of the city's main routes, Gdynia Way in the east end of the city, had flooded and diversions were being put in place.
City centre managers said Christmas lights would be switched on, but a ceremony to mark this was cancelled as a result of the weather.
A similar light switch-on ceremony in the Princesshay area of Exeter city centre has also been postponed.
Elsewhere in Devon, a bridge over the River Culme on the B3181, near Bradninch, Cullompton, has collapsed.
About 470 households in the Bickleigh area in east Devon lost power earlier, Western Power Distribution confirmed.
First Great Western passengers in Devon and Cornwall were advised not to start journeys to and from London because of flooding affecting lines in Devon and Somerset.
The main line is closed between Exeter and Taunton and buses are replacing services between Exeter and Taunton, and Plymouth and Bristol.
First managers said services were likely to be disrupted for "a day or two" until Network Rail staff assessed and repaired damage to the line.
Services between Exeter and Penzance were running normally, they added.
The Tamar Bridge - a major route on the A38 between both counties - was closed to high-sided vehicles for several hours.
Those restrictions were lifted later in the day.
In Cornwall, BBC Travel reported that trees had fallen on many minor roads, including in Falmouth's main street.
Power lines also fell in several places across the county, including Heamoor, near Penzance; Landford, Truro; and Washaway, between Bodmin and Wadebridge.
The Forestry Commission said it had closed Cardinham Woods, near Bodmin, because of winds bringing down trees and branches.
Cornwall Council said its customer contact centre had received more than 170 calls reporting a "wide range of issues", including localised flooding, fallen trees and power cables.