Storm Ali blows caravan off a cliff killing woman in her 50s inside

Tens of thousands of customers without power amid perilous conditions

Jon Sharman
Wednesday 19 September 2018 10:26
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Woman dead after caravan blown off cliff as Storm Ali strikes

A woman has reportedly died after winds from Storm Ali blew a caravan off a cliff with her inside.

The caravan fell over the cliff in County Galway, western Ireland, on Wednesday morning.

Police and emergency workers arrived at the cliff site in Claddaghduff village as high winds still raged. Police said they recovered the body of a woman in her 50s after an emergency call at about 7.45am ​reported.

Forecasters have issued an orange-level alert for more than half the country – the second-highest warning.

A statement from Irish police said: “Gardai in Clifden, Co Galway are dealing with an incident which occurred at Claddaghduff, Co Galway this morning.

“A caravan has blown off a cliff. It is believed that a female in her 50s was in the caravan.

“Gardai and emergency services are currently at the scene.”

RTE reported that the structure was not currently submerged in water but had been blown onto coastline.

Some 55,000 homes and businesses, largely in southwest Ireland, have suffered a loss of power due to the storm, according to the Electricity Supply Board (ESB).

Heavy rain is also moving in on the Galway coast.

Ali has also begun to make itself felt across Northern Ireland and parts of England and Scotland, with winds up to 60mph.

Meteorologists have warned of a “danger to life” from the storm and issued an amber warning for wind, assessing there was a high likelihood of impacts across a swathe of the UK.

ESB Networks, which oversees the power supply, said: ”The damage [to power supplies] is mainly attributable to fallen trees on overhead lines as a result of the high winds.

“Storm Ali is currently active across the southwest and west coast of the country with gale force winds and gusts of up to 74mph.

“The counties most impacted include Cork, Kerry and Limerick, as the storm continues to track north.”

Crews have been mobilised and are working towards restoring power to all affected families.

In Northern Ireland, the M1 motorway was closed in both directions just west of Belfast due to fallen cables, the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) said.

Saintfield Road in Co Down was also closed at the junction of the old Ballynahinch Road due to a fallen tree.

A PSNI statement said: “Motorists are advised to exercise extreme caution in adverse weather conditions. Police are advising motorists to stay in their vehicles.”

Additional reporting by PA

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