Storm Eunice: Pedestrians blown off their feet and down street during deadly gales

London Fire Brigade declared major incident in response to the volume of storm-related calls

Emily Atkinson
Friday 18 February 2022 21:41
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<p>People struggle in the wind as they walk across Westminster Bridge, near the Houses of Parliament in central London</p>

People struggle in the wind as they walk across Westminster Bridge, near the Houses of Parliament in central London

Footage on social media has shown pedestrians being swept off their feet and across roads in south London as ferocious winds tore through the capital.

Videos online caputred commuters in Croydon being forced to the ground and tumbling down the streets by powerful gusts as Storm Eunice wreaked havoc across the UK.

The Met Office earlier issued the most severe “red” weather alert for London as conditions posed likely threat to life. The warning has since been stood down, although a “high impact” amber alert remains in force.

It comes after the London Fire Brigade declared a major incident in response to the volume of 999 calls being taken about Storm Eunice-related incidents.

Control staff will be prioritising incidents where there is a risk to life, with fire crews then attending other calls as non-emergencies when they are able.

The brigade fielded 550 emergency calls between 1.30am and 1pm – more than the number typically seen in 24 hours, the fire service said.

But operators have also taken a number of unhelpful calls, including to a tent which had blown into a neighbour’s garden and to a trampoline which was blowing around in the garden next door, the service said.

It follows reports of severe damage to London’s O2 Arena after gusts tore open parts of its dome as strong winds raged through the capital.

Footage emerged on social media showing a huge split in the white roof of the former Millennium Dome.

According to the most recent video shared online, it appears six panels have since been ripped from the iconic building.

Storm Eunice has brought with it damage, disruption and potentially record-breaking winds to the UK and Ireland.

Four people have died tragically died, however, amid the widespread destruction.

A woman in her 30s was killed when a tree fell on a car in north London, a man in his 50s died when debris struck the windscreen of a vehicle in Merseyside, and a man in his 20s died after his truck collided with a fallen tree in Hampshire.

Earlier, a man was killed by a falling tree in County Wexford, Ireland.

Three people have also died in the Netherlands, and several people in the UK have been taken to hospital with injuries from falling debris.

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