6 January 2014
The south and west coasts would see “colossal waves” like these at Porthcawl, near Bridgend, say forecasters
Huge waves are beginning to batter the southern coast of the UK, as forecasters warn exposed areas could see a fresh round of flooding.
Waves of up to 27ft (8m) have been recorded off Land’s End, Cornwall.
In Aberystwyth, 250 people have been evacuated from seafront flats, and many flood warnings – including three severe ones – remain in place across the UK.
Travel by road and rail is being hit, causing disruption for many returning to work after the Christmas break.
Western and southern areas are bearing the brunt of the latest severe weather, and forecasters are warning that flooding could be worse than that seen in recent days.
Environment Secretary Owen Paterson has chaired a Cobra emergency meeting to ensure agencies are ready to respond, and will make a statement to the Commons later on the impact of the bad weather.
He again defended spending on flood defences, following criticism over the weekend, saying the government was spending “more than ever before”.
The latest travel disruption includes:
- Damage to railway lines caused by recent high winds and heavy rain is affecting Arriva Trains Wales services in many parts of Wales
- Buses are replacing trains on Northern Rail services between Carlisle and Workington, with disruption expected to last up to a week
- Island Line services on the Isle of Wight are suspended until further notice because of severe flooding in the Ryde area
- A recent landslip caused by poor weather means buses are replacing Southern trains between Horsham and Dorking
- The Rail Delivery Group, which speaks on behalf of the rail industry, said despite localised flooding and weather damage, 96% of scheduled services were operating
- Major roads in areas including North Ayrshire, Pembrokeshire, West Sussex, Surrey, Kent, Lancashire, Merseyside, Wiltshire, Somerset, Dorset and Devon are closed because of flooding