Monday, September 24, 2007

Path of destruction as tornadoes hit UK

"While people are saying, ‘Peace and safety,’ destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape." (1 The 5:3)

Tornadoes have caused widespread damage to homes and businesses across the UK as the country experiences a spate of freak weather.

Tornadoes struck Hampshire, the West Midlands, Bedfordshire, East Riding of Yorkshire, Northamptonshire and Warwickshire.

In the West Midlands, around 35 homes are said to have been damaged when a tornado struck Nuneaton just after 6am and lasted several minutes.

Mallard Avenue is said to be one of the worst affected streets in the town, with cars damaged as roof tiles were blown off.

In Luton, Beds, a tornado struck at around 7.30am, ripping through gardens and tearing tiles off roofs.

And in Farnborough, Hants, 20 homes were hit, with a roof torn off a garage and trees uprooted, the fire service said. Other reports said bus shelters had been uprooted.

A spokesman for the Met Office said weather conditions conducive to tornadoes are travelling across the country.

Heavy winds and torrential downpours have led to a miserable morning for commuters with services cancelled or badly delayed on a number of lines as train companies struggled to cope.

One of the worst-hit lines was First Capital Connect where some trains were cancelled and others delayed because of overhead wire problems in the St Albans area in Hertfordshire.

Signalling problems at Hitchin, Hertfordshire, also led to delays to services between Letchworth Garden City and Hitchin.

Overhead wire problems led to a suspension of services between Grays and Upminster in Essex on the London to Tilbury and Southend line c2c.

Both SWT and Southeastern reported delays to services due to slippery rails, while SWT confirmed that it would be introducing a revised timetable from October 1 to include longer journey times due to autumn track conditions.

Virgin Trains, Hull Trains and East Coast main line operator GNER were also hit by delays between Doncaster and York because of a problem with a river bridge.

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