Met Office issues 'severe' weather warning for wind causing travel chaos and power cuts as 70mph gales smash Britain

BRITS are set to be smashed by 70mph gales today as severe winds bring travel chaos and power cuts across the country.

The Met Office has issued a weather warning as strong gusts accompanied by heavy and blustery showers will bring disruption to England and Wales.

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Winds are slamming into seaside towns this morning, with thousands of homes blacked out by power cuts.

Powerboard engineers were scrambling to restore supplies after trees were sent crashing across overhead electricity cables.

Last night, gusts reached staggering speeds of 86mph in Capel Curig, Gwynedd in Wales.

Services across the Irish Sea have been cancelled because of the fury of the storms.

In Cornwall, waves over 20ft high, bigger than a double-decker bus, crashed over sea defences.

Coastguards begged sight-seers not to venture out to take selfies of the waves, warning "No photo is worth a life."

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for wind today -covering the entirety of the two countries, with wind speeds expected to reach up to 70mph in coastal areas and high ground.

The warning came into force at 9pm on Wednesday evening and is set to last until 3pm on Thursday.

The RNLI urged people to exercise caution if visiting exposed cliffs, seafronts or piers due to the "severe safety risk" caused by the wind, which is expected to be accompanied by heavy showers.

In Cornwall, over 100 had no power at Truro, and in the Midlands 110 were hit at Stourport-on-Severn, 154 at Ross-on-Wye and on the Welsh borders, 60 had no electricity for breakfast at Builth Wells.

Sandbags were at the ready in Cornwall where the Met Office warned that seaside towns and villages like Porthleven could be swamped by huge waves sent cascading over sea defences by 70mph winds.

The gusts are set to cause problems on roads, with delays for high-sided vehicles on exposed routes and bridges to avoid the drivers losing control and crashing as their vehicles are buffeted by the gales.

Among scores of reports across Britain, a tree crashewd down and blocked the A5 near Llangollen golf club in North Wales.

Traffic Wales said the A5 at the Ceiriog Viaduct was also closed due to the high winds, with diversions in place.

The Met Office warning says: "Some delays to rail, air and ferry transport are likely, and bus services affected, with some journeys taking longer.

"Gusts of 50 to 55 mph are possible inland, and may reach 60 to 70 mph on coasts and hills, especially in the west, before gradually easing on Thursday afternoon."

But the unsettled weather is expected to ease over the course of the weekend, with no weather warnings in place for the weekend.

Meteorologist Greg Dewhurst said: "The weekend is set to have an unsettled start but nothing usual for the time of year."

He added: "We could see some strong winds during the early hours of Saturday morning and lots of heavy showers around particularly in the west.

"But as we go head into Sunday they should become less frequent and not quite as heavy, so it is an unsettled start but as the weekend goes on the winds will start to ease a little bit." 

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