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Autumn storm to crash into Hampshire with possible 80mph winds
5:27pm Friday 25th October 2013 in News
Hampshire County Council is urging people to prepare for a severe autumn storm.
It is issuing advice and guidance to residents about an Atlantic storm forecast to hit southern counties on Sunday night into Monday morning. The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning with winds expected to reach between 60-80mph inland and higher off the coast. Accompanying the wind will be heavy rain. Up to 40mm is forecast which is likely to cause localised flooding and disrupt rush hour travel on roads, rail and ferry crossings. With trees still in leaf and wet ground there is clearly an increased likelihood of falling trees. Likewise those leaves that are already on the ground may cause localised flooding by blocking gullies and outflows. Residents in these areas are advised to plan accordingly for potential disruption. • Secure loose outdoor items such as garden furniture or ladders; and bring in as many items as possible that are lying around outside. • Securely fasten doors, windows, loft trapdoors and storm shutters. • Window sills should be cleared and curtains be drawn to protect against flying glass. • Vehicles should be parked in the garage, if available; otherwise they should be kept clear of buildings, trees, walls and fences. Hampshire County Council has contingency plans in place and says it is geared up for the worst. Hampshire highways emergency response teams have extra crews on standby ready to be mobilised for dealing with fallen branches or trees on the highway, flooded roads and blocked drains. Local highway offices are planning to open in the early hours of Monday morning to support any recovery efforts. The council’s teams of Accredited Community Safety Officers will be on hand to provide extra man power if required; Adult Services has a community response team ready to assist the most vulnerable if needed while Property Services have arboricultural teams and building maintenance staff in standby to monitor County Council buildings. Councillor Seán Woodward, Executive Member for Economy, Transport and Environment at Hampshire County Council, said: "If the forecast is accurate, Hampshire is in for some extreme wet and windy conditions. Our highways teams are ready with additional support from extra tree crews, gully tankers and emergency response teams on stand-by to help keep Hampshire moving, by dealing with fallen branches or trees and flooded roads. "As Monday will be the first day of the school half term holidays we would expect slightly less traffic than usual but I would ask anyone who has to make a journey to take particular care in these conditions, driving with caution and at an appropriate speed and be patient and considerate to other road users. Sudden, very heavy downpours can lead to roads flooding quickly. Do not attempt to use fords and be extra careful driving through any road surface water as it may be difficult to judge its depth. Be patient and considerate to other road users. Spare a thought too for cyclists and any pedestrians walking along the road side, so that they are not showered by puddle water thrown up from the road by moving vehicles. Be aware too, for the additional hazard of fallen leaves making roads and pavements extra slippery, and also causing drains to become blocked."
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