UK Will Need Up to £500m to Recover as Eunice Kills Four, Leaves 200,000 Homes Without Power
14:31 GMT 19.02.2022 (Updated: 15:18 GMT 28.05.2023)
Four people are dead, thousands of homes are without power, trees have been upended, and transport services have ground to a halt – this is what the UK woke up to on Saturday as recovery efforts got underway after Storm Eunice battered the country.
Storm Eunice, described by weathermen as one of the worst to hit England in decades, has left the country facing a challenging recovery effort that may cost up to £500 million. So far, a total of four people have been killed in the UK and Ireland.
Record-breaking gales of 122mph have been registered on the Isle of Wight, driven by the "once in a century" storm, while the extreme weather has killed a woman in London, a man in Hampshire, and a man in Merseyside. A 59-year-old Wexford County Council employee was also killed while clearing fallen debris on Friday.
19 February 2022, 06:22 GMT
More than 200,000 homes remain without power, with energy companies working desperately to remedy the situation compounded by toppled trees and debris.
Travel chaos wrought by the weather is set to continue throughout the weekend, with UK Transport Secretary Grant Shapps saying that he expected travel disruption for "another day or two."
"Trains are in the wrong locations, there's still debris being removed from our roads," he said.
Furthermore, parts of England are forecast to be hit by up to 8 inches of snow this weekend, as the Met Office issued a yellow warning for heavy snow in Yorkshire and Lancashire.
A yellow wind warning remains for much of the south coast of England and South Wales on Saturday.
Storm Eunice’s best bits so far#StormEunice pic.twitter.com/7cD6QcsiWj— Chris 🌞 (@Chris_Alex) February 19, 2022
Has anyone lost a trampoline last seen flying over my garden #Eunice #StormEunice #trampoline #FlyingFast #FlyingFriday pic.twitter.com/oEQezzcmRZ— John Morgan (@john_morgan_wal) February 18, 2022
Just caught this monster wave at Newhaven, East Sussex chasing storm #Eunice! (Caught at a safe distance) #StormEunice #Eunice #SevereWeather pic.twitter.com/lcnKgs5WVS— StormChaserLiam (@StormChaserLiam) February 18, 2022
According to South Western Railway, it was in the process of clearing more than 40 fallen trees blocking its routes. Saturday afternoon saw some lines reopened on the Great Western Railway, with the Stansted Express suspended until further notice.
Flights at Gatwick, Heathrow and Manchester airports are currently mostly back to normal.
18 February 2022, 05:32 GMT
On Friday, coastal areas of southwest England and south Wales, along with southeast England, were on alert after red weather warnings were issued by the Met Office, indicating a danger to life.
Some landmark buildings sustained damage in the storm, with the roof of the O2 Arena in London partially ripped off and the spire of St Thomas Church in Wells, Somerset toppled.
The #O2 #London ripped by #StormEunice #eunice pic.twitter.com/RF2k4urQfm— Sharon Forbes (@BlondeMzungu) February 18, 2022
More than 430 flights had been cancelled or diverted due to the weather, leaving London City Airport closed for most of the day.
Yesterday we took 1,958 calls which was three times more than the previous day. Although the worst of #StormEunice is over its affect may extend into the coming days. Please be aware of the potential for loose structures or falling debris pic.twitter.com/DQGUcVH5bQ— London Fire Brigade (@LondonFire) February 19, 2022
As the London Fire Brigade responded to 1,958 calls on Friday, the service tweeted that fallout from the storm might “extend into the coming days.”