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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Storm Eleanor leaves Europe battered, but more bad weather is to come

The storm has hammered much of northern Europe, destroying infrastructure and leaving several dead

As Storm Eleanor battered France, not all heeded safety advice to stay away from coastal areas  / AFP PHOTO / BORIS HORVAT
As Storm Eleanor battered France, not all heeded safety advice to stay away from coastal areas / AFP PHOTO / BORIS HORVAT

Storm Eleanor has rampaged across northern Europe, leaving several dead and infrastructure damaged, but forecasters have warned that further incremental weather is to come.

The winter storm reached Europe on Wednesday bringing flooding and winds of up to 100mph. Heavy winds and rain battered France, Germany, Switzerland, parts of Germany and the Netherlands after first hammering the United Kingdom and Ireland. At least three people were killed across Europe, and there was widespread disruption to travel and damage to infrastructure.

The storm left some 200,000 households in France without electricity, according to the Associated Press, and flight delays were reported at airports in Paris, Amsterdam and Zurich.

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Three dead as Storm Eleanor lashes UK and Europe

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In the Cornwall town of Portreath, a 40-foot section of the harbour wall collapsed as the storm passed through. Whilst in Ireland, 150,000 homes and businesses were without electricity, according to Ireland’s Electricity Supply Board (ESB).

A skier was killed in the town of Morillon, in the French Alps by a falling tree, whilst two people drowned off Spain’s Basque coast after being washed out to sea by a huge wave.

The highest winds were on Pilatus Peak near the Swiss city of Lucerne were gusts of 196 kph were recorded, Swiss broadcaster SRF reported. Elsewhere in Switzerland a train was blown off its tracks, injuring several people and some 14,000 homes were left without power.

Dramatic video footage also showed a British Airways plane being forced to abandon a landing attempt in strong winds caused by the storm at London City airport. A number of ferries across the Irish Sea and UK channel were also cancelled.

The storm has passed much of Northern Europe, and Eleanor’s eye is now moving across the North Sea, but the UK Met office warned that more severe weather was still to come, with a cold snap expected to arrive at the weekend, pushing temperatures in Northern Europe to as low as -10.

The storm's wake also saw widespread flood warnings put in place across England, Scotland, Northern France and the Netherlands.

Eleanor is the Met office’s fifth named storm of the 2017-2018 storm season, it came in quick succession to Storm Dylan, which made landfall in the United Kingdom on New Year’s Eve.

The last major storm to hit northern Europe was Hurricane Ophelia in October 2017.

Neil Davies, flood duty manager for the UK's Environment Agency, urged people to take care “on coastal paths and promenades” and warned against people putting themselves at risk, cautioning: “don’t put yourself in unnecessary danger trying to take ‘storm selfies.”

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