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Dramatic pictures: Part of coast road collapses amid tidal surge

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As southern England and Wales bear the brunt of storms battering Britain, Northern Ireland is expected to enjoy a mild and fairly settled run-up to the weekend.

Today should be a mostly dry day with temperatures around 8C before a chilly night with the possibility of a frost.

A spokesman for Meteogroup, the weather forecasting division of the Press Association, said tomorrow would bring more of the same.

“On Friday, Northern Ireland is not doing too badly. It will be mostly dry with some light sunshine but there could be one or two light showers in northern parts. Winds will be mostly gentle on Friday with highest temperatures of around 6C.”

Commenting on the weekend prospects, he added: “It will be breezy at times with spells of rain through the weekend, and some of the rain could be quite heavy late Friday night into Saturday. You could see up to 15mm of rain but nothing particularly unusual.

“The worst of the weather will be further south – parts of England and Wales and the southern part of the Republic of Ireland.”

In the south west of England and south Wales, thousands of homes have been left without power, transport networks are in chaos and people have been forced to leave their homes – with wind speeds reaching more than 90mph.

The Environment Agency (EA) had six severe flood warnings – meaning a danger to life – in place in south-west England.

The EA was warning there was a “high risk” of coastal flooding in Dorset, Devon and of further river flooding on the Somerset Levels and Moors.

On the Levels, which has been badly affected by flooding since Christmas, police used a helicopter to advise the occupants of more than 150 properties at Fordgate and Northmoor to leave their homes because of flooding.

Met Office forecasters have warned of further severe weather to come.

Prime Minister David Cameron announced an extra £100 million would be spent tackling the aftermath of the floods and there were “no restrictions” on the help available.

After chairing a meeting of Whitehall’s emergency committee Cobra, he said: “My sympathy is with everyone affected by the ongoing storms which are causing misery to communities and businesses across the country.

“With power outages, more flooding and more bad weather forecast, I have chaired a Cobra this afternoon to ensure that everything that can be done to get stricken communities moving is being done: there are no restrictions on help.”

 

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