UK weather: Ex-hurricane Bertha continues to batter Britain after woman has lucky escape in Hull 'mini tornado'
Storm caused flash flooding and damage to homes, shops, trees and cars
Monday 11 August 2014
A woman had a lucky escape when a tree fell on her taxi in a “mini tornado” caused by ex-hurricane Bertha, which wreaked havoc with toppled trees, flooding and gales across Britain.
The extreme weather ripped roof tiles off houses and caused a part of a ceiling to cave in at a supermarket in Maidstone, Kent.
June Stephenson, 57, was in the back of the taxi in Hull waiting for her husband when a tree fell on the vehicle during violent winds on Sunday.
Her husband, Martin Stephenson, said they were on their way to celebrate their daughter’s wedding anniversary with family when the “sound of the wind changed”.
"I came round the front to see the car was buried by the three trees," the 55-year-old said.
"We've never had this before. I've seen it windy before, I've seen these [trees] what was there, I've seen them bend and sway but they've just got snapped off, just straight across the road to the car - powerful. Very powerful."
Describing the wind "like a tornado", he said it was over in about 20 seconds, leaving his wife and the taxi driver trapped in the car.
A tree on top of June Stephenson's taxi after a 'mini tornado' in Hull Mrs Stephenson was left with glass embedded in her arm and suffered minor injuries to her face in the incident in Hopewell Road, where roof tiles had been ripped off.
"It doesn't bear thinking about what would have happened if I had been facing the other way," she told the Hull Daily Mail.
Stormy conditions are set to continue today as driving rain and winds of up to 50mph sweep northern England and Scotland and weather warnings are in place for torrential rain.
North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said crews dealt with a number of flooding incidents in the Filey area on Sunday night.
A pump was brought in from Scarborough after water levels overwhelmed the Primrose Valley holiday park.
Around 22 properties were affected by flooding at the nearby village of Hunmanby Gap.
The weather that had battered Wales and many parts of England on Sunday moved on to northern parts today.
By early Monday morning, the town of Lossiemouth in Scotland, had recorded almost a month's rainfall in 12 hours, while Aberdeenshire saw gusts of 50mph.
The Environment Agency issued six flood warnings and 47 less serious alerts across England and Wales, while the Scottish Environment Protection Agency had 12 flood alerts in place.
While parts of England and Wales are under Met Office warnings for rain and wind, forecaster Emma Corrigan said it is likely to clear up as the storm continues its course.
“It is expected to be a much drier day for southern parts but we'll still see some scattered showers in the west, although these will spread eastwards as the day moves on,” she said.
“It is expected to feel quite cool, with temperatures in the mid to high teens. It could reach around 21C in the South East but with blustery winds it will feel a little cooler than that.”
The Met Office said people should be prepared for some disruption to transport, with localised flooding likely.
Ms Corrigan said a return to the sunshine and heat of earlier this summer does not look likely soon.
“Towards the end of the week we will see calmer, more settled conditions but temperatures will on average stay on the cooler side,” she said.
“There is no real indication of a return to the hot conditions we've seen.”
Additional reporting by PA
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