x

Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 25 June 2018

Three dead as Storm Eleanor lashes UK and Europe

Storm Eleanor swept into France, Belgium and the Netherlands on Wednesday after tearing through England and Northern Ireland

Three people have died as storm Eleanor swept across most of northern Europe.

A skier died in the French Alps and 15 others were injured, four seriously, elsewhere in France.

In Spain, two people were killed when they were swept away by a huge wave on the northern Basque coast.

Storm Eleanor swept into France, Belgium and the Netherlands on Wednesday after tearing through England and Northern Ireland, cutting power to tens of thousands while forcing airports and train services to halt operations.

Heavy winds led the airports in Strasbourg and Basel-Mulhouse on France's border with Germany and Switzerland to close after gusts of more than 110 kilometres per hour were recorded, France's civil aviation authority said, before they were reopened shortly after midday.

One person was also injured in the Netherlands after a tree fell on them in the southern village of Heesch.

Yesterday, the Thames Barrier, one of the largest movable flood barriers in the world, closed as a precautionary measure to protect London from swelling tides.

"We have seen some heavy showers push through across the south of the UK along with hail, loud thunder and lightning, which has woken people up," said meteorologist Becky Mitchell.

Gusts of 160kph were recorded at Great Dun Fell in Westmorland, north-west England, while overturned vehicles and trees caused closures of major motorways.

More: America's big freeze - in pictures