Scotland

Remnants of Hurricane Gonzalo batter Scotland

Islay storm Image copyright islayinfo.com
Image caption Much of the west of Scotland, including Islay, has been affected by strong winds

Gale-force winds and heavy rain caused major disruption in Scotland as the remnants of Hurricane Gonzalo passed over the country.

The Met Office issued a yellow "be aware" weather warning for the whole of Scotland, with gusts of more than 80mph recorded.

Ferry services were cancelled, there were road and bridge closures and hundreds of people faced power cuts.

Transport Minister Keith Brown urged people to allow extra travel time.

The A83 Rest and Be Thankful in Argyll was closed for a time because of high winds. Police in Oban said wind speeds of 88mph had been recorded over the road.

A 67mph gust hit Machrihanish on the Mull of Kintyre, while a wind speed of 63mph was recorded in Salsburgh in North Lanarkshire.

Ferries cancelled

Ferry operator Calmac cancelled 11 routes and suspended 12 others, while other ferry companies also axed services.

NorthLink ferries cancelled its 16:45 sailing from Stromness on Orkney and its 19:00 sailing from Scrabster on the mainland, while P&O Ferries suspended sailings on the Larne/Cairnryan service due to the adverse weather.

Pentland Ferries cancelled its sailings in the Pentland Firth.

Image caption The coastline at Ballantrae, South Ayrshire takes a battering
Image caption The nearby harbour was also badly affected
Image copyright jackie smith
Image caption Waves lapped over the front at Gourock on the Clyde coast
Image copyright Ian McIntyre
Image caption Hebridean cruise boat Elizabeth G broke her moorings in Oban harbour and beached herself at the Corran Esplanade

Meanwhile hundreds of people were left without power as a result of the adverse weather.

Almost 600 Scottish Hydroelectric Power Distribution customers were left without electricity in Dunblane, Dunoon, Fort William and the Western Isles.

Most had supplies restored by lunchtime, although in Elgin, Portree, Isle of Coll, Isle of Lewis and Dunoon some customers remained without power for a longer period of time.


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A Scottish Hydroelectric Power Distribution spokesman said: "We would like to apologise for this disruption, caused by the remnants of Hurricane Gonzalo."

In Moffat, Dumfries and Galloway, around 90 Scottish Power customers were left without electricity. The company was working to restore power to up to 90 customers in Girvan in South Ayrshire.

On the roads, there were closures on the Skye Bridge, Forth Road Bridge, Tay Bridge, Dornoch Bridge and Erskine Bridge.

Hurricane Gonzalo caused widespread damage and a power blackout when it hit Bermuda last week.

The Met Office said: "The strongest winds are expected on Tuesday as the low pressure clears eastwards.

"Some uncertainty remains in the track and intensity, but there remains the potential for localised disruption to travel, especially as the strongest winds will coincide with rush hour in places."

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Media captionRemnants of Hurricane Gonzalo are making their way across the UK, as the BBC Weather's Matt Taylor explains

Forecasters added that fallen leaves could impede drainage, increasing the risk of surface water on roads.

But the Met Office also said that such weather was not unusual for this time of year.

Transport Minister Keith Brown urged people to take extra care when out and about.

He told BBC Radio Scotland: "For some parts of Scotland it will become particularly more pronounced during the evening hours and in the coastal communities of Scotland but the same advice is true for everyone: if you can, take as much information on board from bulletins and also make sure that you give yourself that additional time.

"And one or two other precautions to make sure that if you do find yourself in some kind of trouble in terms of not being able to move in your car that you have a mobile phone, that you have a blanket, you have water."

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