UK floods: Homes without power as new storm approaches – ‘This is an exceptional event. It was the highest rainfall in January since 1776 and we think it is likely December, January and February will be the highest for 250 years.’Posted by Jim at Thursday, February 13, 2014
13 February 2014 (BBC News) – Engineers are working to restore power to thousands of UK homes as forecasters warn a storm on Friday could be worse than Wednesday's destructive weather.
BBC Weather's John Hammond said the storm, approaching from the Atlantic, would be "every bit as intense, if not more" compared with Wednesday's.
About 56,000 UK properties remain without electricity after gusts of wind up to 112mph were recorded.
More rain is also expected, bringing further problems for flooded areas.
The Met Office has issued an amber "be prepared" warning for rain in south-west England on Friday, and another for wind along England's south coast on Friday evening and into Saturday.
It has also issued several lower-level yellow warnings for rain, snow and wind across much of the UK.
"It looks like being the wettest winter on record and the groundwater has got nowhere to go," Mr Hammond said.
"The ground is like a sponge, the sponge is full to overflowing. What we do not need is more rain. [But] what we are going to get is another storm."
He said Friday's storm would reach south-west England in the early hours, with 15-25mm (up to 1in) of rain expected across southern counties, and "double that" possible in parts of the South West.
He added that winds of 70-80mph would affect the south coast of England late on Friday and into Saturday morning.
Sixteen severe flood warnings remain for Berkshire, Surrey and Somerset - all already hit by flooding. […]
Wales bore the brunt of the hurricane-force winds on Wednesday, but a rare "red warning" for wind is no longer in place.
Tim Field, of the Energy Networks Association, which represents UK energy companies, said earlier that about three quarters of the properties with no electricity were in Wales, while the remainder were spread across northern and south-west England and the West Midlands. […]
Forecasters are also warning of the possibility of significant snowfall in Northern Ireland, southern Scotland and northern England on Friday.
Environment Agency programme director Toby Willison said many rivers in southern England were at their highest recorded levels.
"This is an exceptional event. It was the highest rainfall in January since 1776 and we think it is likely December, January, and February will be the highest for 250 years," he added. [more]