Rush hour travel warning as Storm Henry hits Scotland – BBC News

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Travellers are being advised to check their journey routes before setting out after Storm Henry swept in to Scotland bringing gales and gusts of over 90mph.

Traffic Scotland said fallen trees had shut roads, and trains and ferry routes had been hit by wind and heavy rain.

A Met Office amber “be prepared” alert for high winds covering most of the country was lifted early.

More than 3,000 households, mostly in the Highlands, were left without electricity overnight.

By 08:30, 2,000 were reported to be still without power.

And Scottish Hydro was working on a “red alert”, with engineers on standby in the north-west Highlands, Western Isles, Skye and Argyll.

Staff earlier contacted vulnerable customers to see if they would need extra assistance in the event of a power cut.

BBC Scotland weather forecasters said the highest low-level gust of wind recorded overnight was 100mph, at the Tay Road Bridge.

140ft tree

National Rail said services had been disrupted between Irvine and Ayr because of damage to the overhead electric wires.

ScotRail, meanwhile, said there was severe disruption on services from Glasgow to Oban, Fort William and Mallaig because of the weather and urged commuters to check trains were running before beginning their journeys.

Drivers are advised to avoid the Clydebank area or expect significant delays as the A82 westbound carriageway between the Kilbowie Roundabout and Mountblow Road is likely to be closed until this afternoon.

A 140ft tree near the road is at risk of falling.

The Tay Road Bridge was closed after a gust of 91mph was recorded, but later reopened to cars and single deck buses.

The Forth Road Bridge was also closed on Monday after winds reached 84mph. It later reopened to cars only.

In England, the Humber Bridge was shut to high-sided vehicles and caravans and a speed limit was imposed after a lorry blew over in 49mph winds.

Travel latest

The BBC Weather Centre said there was the potential for winds to be disruptive during rush hour.

Winds of 60-80mph were expected widely, with gusts of 90mph possible in exposed areas, especially in the north of Scotland.

The Met Office said: “Winds will ease during Tuesday morning, but will still be very strong in places for the morning rush hour.

“Be prepared for some potentially severe weather, causing transport disruption and difficult driving, some structural damage, dangerous coastal conditions and disruption to power supplies.”

The Met Office’s official wind speed observations included:

  • 148mph at the summit of Cairn Gorm
  • 89mph on South Uist
  • 71mph at Malin Head
  • 63mph at Loftus
  • 59mph in Glasgow

Scottish Transport Minister Derek Mackay said on Monday the Scottish government Resilience Room (SGoRR) has been activated and it was closely monitoring events.

“Travellers are advised to take care in difficult conditions and allow extra time for their journeys,” he said.

“High winds can also cause disruption to utilities like power and telecoms and key responder organisations across Scotland, including councils, utilities and blue light services, are well used to dealing with severe weather events such as these forecast.”

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) had issued 28 flood warnings late on Monday, for Tayside and areas further north.

As well as the Met Office amber warning for wind, a yellow “be aware” warning has been issued for rain in north west Scotland until 21:00 on Tuesday.

Storm Henry is the eighth winter storm and comes just days after the UK saw off Storm Gertrude, which brought gusts of more than 100mph in Shetland.

Check out the latest travel news for Scotland

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For the latest on the roads visit the BBC’s travel news page and keep up to date with incidents and roadworks on the motorways here.

Around the country you can check for updates from:

Alternatively, for regular travel bulletins listen live to BBC Radio Scotland and follow @BBCTravelScot.

In times of severe disruption you can also follow the BBC Scotland severe weather Twitter list of key sources.

Below are a number of other traffic information sources.

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