Storm leaves trail of chaos in Devon

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  • The Environment Agency has issued a severe weather warning for the south Devon coast from Exmouth to Lyme Regis and warned people to keep away from coastal areas during the storm.
  • Police in Dawlish have declared a major incident after 20 people in their homes had to be evacuated
  • Dawlish was severely effected last night with up to 90 feet of the seawall ripped away and the station and rails badly damaged.
  • All train services between Exeter and Penzance have been cancelled

5:25pm

Things have calmed down a bit for now but if there are any new developments we will be back.

5:21pm

4:15pm

THIS just in from Stagecoast South West bus company:

"Service 55/155 - we cannot currently serve Stoke Canon following a road closure therefore we will be diverting via Crediton and Bickleigh."

4:09pm

Some branch lines in Cornwall and Devon are now operating, although all lines between Exeter St Davids and Penzance remain closed.

First Great Western remains unable to offer a  train service west of Exeter due to further overnight severe weather conditions.

It said: "We are working with Network Rail to evaluate the rail conditions in many areas.  We are unable to procure road transport as many of the roads have been affected by the weather conditions.

"We would strongly advise customers not to attempt to travel for the rest of today."

11:56am

11:54am

Police say clock tower in Kingsand is in danger of collapse

11:43am

The railway between Exeter and Penzance is currently shut after damage at several locations caused by storm force winds, heavy seas and flooding.
On the coast at Dawlish, around 80m of both tracks has been severely damaged by the sea, washing away ballast and the foundations on which the track is built. There is also severe damage to the sea wall and the track and platforms at Dawlish station.

Network Rail engineers are on site at a number of locations in the south west of England and are making repairs where the weather conditions permit. It is hoped that these repairs will enable some services on the main line between Plymouth and Penzance to resume today, however the line between Exeter and Plymouth will remain closed until further notice owing to the damage at Dawlish.

An initial assessment of the damage at Dawlish will be carried out as soon as the weather subsides to help Network Rail identify the extent and scope of repairs required to enable trains to run safely.

Passengers are advised to check with their train operator or National Rail Enquiries for the latest information on how the weather is impacting on journeys before setting off.

11:43am

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11:16am

Road closed and four homes evacuated at Torcross
Shingle thrown onto Slapton Line by the storm forced the closure of the road to vehicles this morning and four homes have had to be evacuated on the seafront at Torcross as the high tides smashed the fronts of four properties.

Teams from South Hams District Council's works department are surveying the damage and helping where they can to ensure residents are safe during today's tidal surge and severe storm.

A spokesman for South Hams District Council said: "Our teams have been down there since early this morning trying to make sure people are safe as possible in the circumstances.

"The properties were evacuated because there was danger from broken glass and further damage caused by the breaking rollers.

"We also have unconfirmed reports that there may be a breach in the sea defences and that the rebuilt road in front of Slapton Ley is threatened. We are awaiting reports back from our engineer at the scene."

Hard pressed road engineers are also trying to assess whether the road has been damaged.

10:48am

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10:34am

Devon and Cornwall Police says it is continuing to work with partners across the Force area in responding to overnight storms.
Multi-agency teams are working across the region to deal with a large amount of calls relating to road debris, damage to property and flooding.
The train track and railway station at Dawlish has suffered severe damage overnight and high tide is currently being experienced in the area. Police would ask anyone planning to travel to Dawlish in order to look at the scene to refrain and allow responders to do everything possible to help local residents.
People are also asked to stay away from coastal areas where waves may well cause damage to vehicles.
In Plymouth The Hoe is experiencing large waves and damage to some properties. We are currently working with the local authority to make the area as safe as possible.
Cornwall saw damage and debris overnight and remains in recovery this morning.
There remains a host of minor road closures throughout the region due to road debris and fallen trees. Motorists are warned to expect the unexpected on rural roads and drive according to road conditions.
Flood water should also be avoided and speeds should be lowered on the region’s main road network.
The latest information can be found on Twitter by following @metoffice, @envagency and @envagencySW. You can also follow the hashtag #floodwaware

10:32am

10:31am

There are further problems at Kingsand and at Cawsand where there are reports of damage to the Clock Tower and the Institution building at Kingsand and a house which is in danger of collapsing into the sea.  Teams from CORMAC, the fire and rescue service, the police and the coastguards are on the scene.  Further teams from CORMAC are also on route to make safe the homes damaged by last night’s severe weather.  A rest centre has now been opened at Maker with Rame Village Hall for any residents who may have to leave their homes.


The latest report from the MET office forecasts further strong winds today, with heavy rain.  This is expected to ease towards the end of the day, but more heavy rain is expected on Thursday morning and then a further period of strong winds and heavy rain on Friday evening into Saturday.

10:11am

 A spokesman for South Hams District Council said homes on the seafront at Torcross in Devon were evacuated "because there was danger from broken glass and further damage caused by the breaking rollers".
He added: "We also have unconfirmed reports that there may be a breach in the sea defences and that the rebuilt road in front of Slapton Ley is threatened. We are awaiting reports back from our engineer at the scene."

10:06am

In Kingsand homes were evacuated overnight because of a fear of flooding.

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