World weather news

World weather news, February 2017

At least three people have died after one of California's strongest storms in years brought torrential rain and flash floods to the state. More than 100 homes have been evacuated over fears of mud slides near Los Angeles after the Pacific storm parked itself over southern California, opening sinkholes and cutting power to thousands of people. More than 300 flights at Los Angeles international airport have also been cancelled or delayed. The storm stretched far out into the ocean and was at its strongest late on Friday afternoon. One man was found dead in a submerged vehicle in the desert town of Victorville after several cars were washed down a flooded street, San Bernardino county fire spokesman Eric Sherwin said. A second man was electrocuted in the Sherman Oaks area of LA when a tree falling in heavy rain downed power lines that hit a car. Later in the same neighbourhood, a sinkhole swallowed two cars, the second on live TV as viewers watched it teeter on the edge before plunging in. Firefighters rescued one person from the first car, and the driver escaped from the second vehicle before it fell into the hole. Amtrak cancelled services for much of California's southern and central coast, and several stretches of road were closed by flooding. "The storm looks to be the strongest storm to hit south-west California this season," the National Weather Service said. "It is likely the strongest within the last six years and possibly even as far back as December 2004 or January 1995." By Friday evening, Ventura county and northern Los Angeles county had recorded 24-hour rain totals of up to 7.5 in, with the San Marcos mountain pass in Santa Barbara county receiving nearly 8.5 in.
A woman was killed and at least two people were seriously injured as Storm Doris brought winds gusting to 94 mph, snow and rain to the UK. West Midlands Ambulance Service said the woman had suffered head injuries when a piece of debris fell on to a street in Wolverhampton. Strong winds led to flight cancellations and road and rail disruption across much of the country. About 1,500 homes and businesses were without electricity in Northern Ireland after trees fell on overhead lines. More than 21,500 customers had their power restored earlier. Northern Powergrid says nearly 900 homes were left without power in Sheffield at one point. UK Power Networks said 12,030 properties lost power in Suffolk and about 40,000 homes in total were without power across East Anglia at one time. Energy company SSE said about 700 customers had experienced power cuts in Scotland, mainly in rural Perthshire, Kinross, Dunblane and Milnathort, as a result of heavy snow damaging its overhead network. Highways England later re-opened the Dartford Crossing linking Kent and Essex, the Orwell Bridge on the A14 in Suffolk and the M48 Severn Bridge, which were all closed due to high winds. The M80 reopened after earlier closures in both directions due to snow. Heathrow has flagged at least 77 flights as cancelled on its website and says its schedule was reduced by 10% because of the weather. Aer Lingus cancelled 19 of its 111 flights between the UK and the Republic of Ireland. Gale-force winds led to the cancellation of ferries and flights between the Isle of Man and the UK Speed limits of 50mph were imposed on several train lines affecting Arrival Trains Wales, Chiltern Railways, East Midlands Trains, Grand Central, Great Northern, South West, and Southeastern services.

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Last updated 24 February 2017.

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