Hurricane Ophelia: trains, boats and planes cancelled ahead of storm

Many ferries will remain in port, and more than 80 flights cancelled on Ryanair alone

Simon Calder
Travel Correspondent
Monday 16 October 2017 16:15
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Tens of thousands of travellers have had their plans wrecked as the last gasps of Hurricane Ophelia approach the UK. which is expected to bring travel chaos to the UK and Ireland on Monday and Tuesday.

Ryanair alone has cancelled more than 80 flights, affecting an estimated 15,000 travellers. Services to and from Dublin, Knock and Cork are particularly badly affected, but the Belfast-Gatwick and Glasgow-Stansted services have also been cancelled.

More than 100 flights to and from Dublin airport were grounded.

The Foreign Office is warning UK visitors to Ireland: "Hurricane Ophelia is forecast to bring hazardous sea and weather conditions to Ireland from around Monday 16 October 2017.

"Follow the advice of the local authorities, including any evacuation orders."

Aer Lingus has cancelled numerous services ahead of the storm, including three round-trips from Dublin to both Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as links from Heathrow to Cork and Shannon.

At Heathrow, SAS flights to Stockholm and Eurowings to Dusseldorf have also been cancelled.

The biggest UK budget airline, easyJet, cancelled 26 flights to and from Belfast International, including 10 services to and from Gatwick.

At Belfast City, Flybe has cancelled 33 arrivals and departures. It is allowing anyone booked on a flight to or from Northern Ireland or Scotland up to noon on Tuesday to postpone their journey without penalty.

In Scotland, Loganair is warning: “Weather forecasts for the west of Scotland indicate that high winds and rain will impact the west of Scotland from Monday afternoon through to Tuesday lunchtime.

"The possibility of weather disruption to Loganair flights is increased, and we’re therefore offering customers booked to travel on certain routes on Monday and Tuesday the opportunity to voluntarily re-book their travel without charge.”

Many other airlines have put waivers in place that allow passengers to postpone their journeys.

BA is offering customers booked to fly to or from any domestic destination outside London on Tuesday the chance to change their travel dates

United is allowing anyone flying from Edinburgh, Glasgow, Cork, Dublin or Shannon on Monday or Tuesday to postpone to a flight up to Friday.

American Airlines is granting the same option to Dublin passengers, while Delta travellers have the option to fly on any day up to Monday 23 October.

Initially Britain's train operators were hoping to run a normal service, but debris on the tracks and speed restrictions are now causing problems. Great Western Railway services heading from St Austell towards Penzance are currently being disrupted due to a fallen tree that is blocking the westbound line.

Between Preston and Carlisle a speed restriction is in place, which is delaying Anglo-Scottish services on Virgin Trains and TransPennine Express services.

Arriva Trains Wales has warned of possible delays on lines in west Wales, including Llanelli to Fishguard, Machynlleth to Pwllheli and Llandudno Junction to Holyhead.

Irish Ferries has cancelled all sailings from Holyhead to Dublin, and warns that services on Tuesday will be disrupted. All services between Pembroke and Rosslare have been cancelled on Monday, as well as the first sailing from Wales on Tuesday.

Stena Line, which has a number of Irish Sea services, warns of “Possible disruptions to sailing on 16 October due to adverse weather”.

P&O Ferries has cancelled some sailings between Liverpool and Dublin on Monday.

In Scotland, many Caledonian MacBrayne ferries are cancelled on Monday, and the operator warns that from Tuesday to Thursday “there is heightened possibility of disruption or cancellation at short notice”.

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