Wales weather: Power cuts as 80mph winds return

Lorry blown over on the M4 Briton Ferry bridge A lorry blew over on the M4 Briton Ferry Bridge blocking the carriageway

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As many as 15,000 properties have suffered power cuts as high winds cause problems across large areas of Wales.

Gusts of nearly 80mph were recorded at Mumbles after the Met Office issued an amber "be aware" warning for wind, with a lower yellow warning for rain.

Large parts of mid Wales including Brecon and Rhayader were hit by a brief loss of electricity around lunchtime.

Natural Resources Wales has issued one flood warning for the Lower Dee Valley and several flood alerts.

Western Power Distribution (WPD) said on Saturday that communities ranging across south and west Wales from Abersychan near Pontypool to Dale in Pembrokeshire had suffered localised cuts due to high winds.

It said as many as 15,000 customers in mid Wales were without power for a short while at lunchtime due to debris on an overhead line.

The cut affected properties in the Brecon, Llandrindod Wells and Rhayader areas but all were soon reconnected.

Hundreds of homes were still without power across south and west Wales on Saturday evening but WPD said engineers were responding to fix problems as and when they arose.

But ScottishPower said it had no reports of any problems in its area serving north and mid Wales.

Stormy seas at Porthcawl on 8 February People gathered in Porthcawl to see the waves crash ashore
River Usk at Abergavenny, 8 Feb 2014 The swollen River Usk was high at Abergavenny
Flooded field in Abergavenny Localised flooding had been predicted in many areas, such as Monmouthshire

Roads have also been disrupted by the weather.

  • The A490 was closed at Welshpool both ways between A458 and B4388 due to flooding
  • The M4 Briton Ferry bridge was closed in both directions due to an upturned lorry, prompting a warning of possible delays for football fans travelling to Swansea for the Premier League match against Cardiff
  • The M48 Severn Bridge, the Britannia Bridge in north west Wales and the Cleddau Bridge in Pembrokeshire have been subject to restrictions due to high winds
  • In Pembrokeshire, the seafront road in Amroth has been closed, but the A487 at Newgale has reopened.

Last Sunday ten people had to be rescued after a bus was hit by a large wave in Newgale during high winds and high tides along the Welsh coast.

Some sea crossings have also been affected.

Irish Ferries cancelled their Swift sailings between Dublin and Holyhead on Saturday but the firm said passengers would be accommodated on its cruise ferry crossings.

The Met Office warned that southerly gales would hit south and west Wales with areas including Bridgend, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, Neath Port Talbot, Pembrokeshire, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Swansea, Vale of Glamorgan affected.

High winds were also expected to hit Ceredigion, Gwynedd and Anglesey.

Large waves were also expected, while inland wind gusts of 50mph to 60mph are likely.

"After a short lull, winds will increase from the southwest during the course of Saturday with severe gales affecting coastal districts, bringing gusts of 60-70mph and isolated 80mph at the most exposed locations within the amber warning area," a Met Office spokesman said.

"The public should be prepared for disruption to transport and locally to power supplies, particularly when combined with the impacts of heavy rainfall."

The yellow warning, meaning be aware, for rain covers much of Wales with 17 counties in south, west and mid Wales affected.

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