Wales

Ten rescued as wave strands bus in Newgale, Pembrokeshire

  • 2 February 2014
  • From the section Wales

Ten people have been rescued after a bus was hit by a large wave in Newgale during high winds and high tides along the Welsh coast.

Pembrokeshire council say they were in the process of closing the road at the time.

Meanwhile, Ceredigion council is assessing the damage to Aberystwyth promenade after waves hit the seafront for the second time this year.

Eighteen flood warning and 12 alerts are in place in Wales.

At Newgale, Milford Haven Coastguard was contacted just after 19:00 GMT on Saturday with reports that the bus was stuck on the front, after it was hit by a large wave and became surrounded by flood water.

Coastguard, police, fire and ambulance crews were sent to the scene and an RAF helicopter from Chivenor in Devon was called, but was stood down once the passengers were helped to safety.

There were no reported injuries.

The council said they had been working to clear the rubble on the road but the A487 will remain closed until further notice. The bus was the responsibility of the owner to move, a spokesman said.

He added that the council was in the process of closing the road when the bus was hit by the wave.

In Aberystwyth, repairs to the town's sea wall damaged by January's storms were completed on Friday.

The bus became engulfed with flood water at Newgale in Pembrokeshire
Aberystwyth front was hit by another round of waves and winds on Saturday night
Ceredigion Council said the damage on Aberystwyth promenade was less than feared
Shingle was washed onto the promenade during Saturday night's high tide
Workers clearing the road by the bus stranded in Newgale

But 600 university students living on the seafront were either rehoused or accepted the offer to travel home or to another part of the UK for the weekend.

A Ceredigion council spokesman said: "Due to the increased wind, the high tide gave more cause for concern than was first predicted.

"Due to the worsening conditions, the evacuation centre at Borth Youth Centre was opened. One person made use of the facility and the centre has now closed."

The promenade road in Aberystwyth was closed during Saturday night's high tide at 21:02 GMT.

Police were in attendance to prevent sightseers getting into danger.

The road along the promenade was closed to traffic on Sunday ahead of another high tide of 5.3m at 21:44 GMT on Sunday.

Alun Williams, the council's cabinet member responsible for Transport, Waste and Carbon management, said: "We are really pleased that our work to bolster the sea defences on Aberystywth promenade has resulted in minimal damage.

"Part of the main road along the sea front is already open and we hope the rest of the road will be open to traffic by lunchtime on Monday.

"We aim to clear the promenade of shale in the next few days."

The strongest gusts in the UK were recorded earlier in the day at Aberdaron in Gwynedd when wind speeds reached 84mph (135Km/h) at 14:00 GMT.

Gusts of 62mph (99Km/h) were also recorded at Aberporth in Ceredigion between 16:00 GMT and 19:00 GMT on Saturday.

Steve Matthews, watch manager at Swansea Coastguard, said there were tricky conditions on the sea and along the coast, with gale force winds, high tides and heavy rain.

"Our advice is simple, please don't take risks. But if you do get into difficulty, or spot someone who might be in trouble, call 999 and ask for the coastguard," he added.

Earlier on Saturday most of Wales escaped the predicted flooding.

There was a 'partial overspill' of sea water at a temporary dam built with sandbags ferried by a helicopter at Llanbedr, Gwynedd.

Since Wednesday, a helicopter had been positioning 500 giant sandbags in a 50m (160ft) breach to stop the hole getting any larger.

There was some minor flooding in Haverfordwest and at Lower Town Fishguard, and debris from the sea had to be cleaned up at Milford Haven.

Early warnings for rain and strong winds are in force for Monday and Tuesday, as the unsettled weather continues.

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