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Tag Archive: English Channel


In pictures: Aftermath of storms

Two people were killed on Friday as strong winds and heavy rain hit southern England, adding to problems already caused by widespread storms and flooding.

Large waves hit the lighthouse and harbour at high tide at Newhaven in Sussex

A freak wave killed an 85-year-old cruise ship passenger in the Channel. Here waves hit the lighthouse and harbour at high tide at Newhaven in Sussex

The scene in Kingsway opposite Holborn Tube station in central London, after a woman was killed after large chunks of masonry fell on to a Skoda Octavia vehicle she was in at 11.05pm yesterday.

In central London, mother-of-three Julie Sillitoe, 49, was killed when the taxi she was driving was crushed by falling masonry. Her two passengers were taken to hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Waves break below the East Cliff Pavillion in Folkestone during high tide.

Strong wind and waves batter parts of the south coast, including the East Cliff Pavilion in Folkestone, as thousands of homes are without power.

Waves during high tide at Sunny Sands Beach in Folkestone

Waves during high tide at Sunny Sands Beach in Folkestone. High winds are expected to subside during Saturday, after reaching 80mph.

Soldiers help a tree surgeon remove a fallen tree in Egham, west London

Soldiers help a tree surgeon remove a fallen tree in Egham, west London.

Volunteers and charities fill sandbags before they are distributed in Egham, west of London.

Meanwhile, volunteers from the local community and charities have helped to fill sandbags before they are distributed in Egham following the wettest start to the year for 250 years.

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Pensioner, 85, dies after massive wave batters cruise ship as 80mph storms leave more than 106,000 homes without power

  • An elderly cruise ship passenger has died after vessel hit by freak wave in the English Channel
  • A taxi driver, Julie Sillitoe, was killed after her car was crushed by falling masonry in central London
  • A young pregnant woman and her unborn baby were killed in a car crash in South Wales
  • Thirty-two people were rescued from a beachfront restaurant after it was pelted by storm-blown shingle and flooded
  • Some 16 severe flood warnings – meaning there is a danger to life – are in place
  • Warnings issued for coastal communities from Cornwall to Hampshire, Gloucester and the Thames Valley
  • Nearly 150 less serious flood warnings and 250 flood alerts were also in place this morning
  • Engineers are battling strong winds and rain to restore 106,101 homes that have had their power cut off
  • Norman Cook, also known as Fatboy Slim, had to rescue pieces of his decking which were blown on to Hove seafront
  • Environment Agency tells Whitehall more properties will be flooded and Thames water levels will rise

By Anna Edwards and Wills Robinson

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An 85-year-old man died yesterday after the 22,000-tonne Marco Polo cruise ship was hit by a freak wave in the English Channel, as more than 106,000 homes – including the Queen’s – are without power after winds of up to 80mph cut off electricity.

Water crashed through a window, injuring a number of people. The man was airlifted off the vessel along with a woman in her 70s, but later died. About 10 other people suffered minor injuries and were treated on board.

As howling winds and further downpours battered Britain and killed three people, 32 diners were rescued from a beachfront restaurant after it was pelted by storm-blown shingle and flooded.

 

Newhaven lighthouse is battered by waves as high winds from the latest winter storm continues

Newhaven lighthouse is battered by waves as high winds from the latest winter storm continues

Rough seas pound Brighton Marina, on England's south coast, as more than 140,000 homes are without power following the violent storms

Rough seas pound Brighton Marina, on England’s south coast, as more than 140,000 homes are without power following the violent storms

Huge waves engulf Newhaven harbour. Two people have died in the last day during the storms which have pounded the country

Huge waves engulf Newhaven harbour. Two people have died in the last day during the storms which have pounded the country

The Environment Agency and emergency services have battled to cope with worst winter storms in living memory. Coastal towns like Southsea, Hampshire, (today) have been engulfed by huge waves

The Environment Agency and emergency services have battled to cope with worst winter storms in living memory. Coastal towns like Southsea, Hampshire, (today) have been engulfed by huge waves

One man risked his life by standing on a jetty in Old Portsmouth in Southsea, Hampshire, as the waves surged over the walls and flooded the coast

One man risked his life by standing on a jetty in Old Portsmouth in Southsea, Hampshire, as the waves surged over the walls and flooded the coast

Large waves smash against the lighthouse and harbour at high tide at Newhaven in Sussex

Large waves smash against the lighthouse and harbour at high tide at Newhaven in Sussex

One man died on the cruise liner 'Marco Polo' when a huge freak wave crashed through a window

One man died on the cruise liner ‘Marco Polo’ when a huge freak wave crashed through a window

The weather has also claimed three other lives. A woman died after falling masonry crushed the roof of her car, and a young pregnant woman and her unborn baby were killed as they drove through atrocious weather conditions in South Wales.

Police in Scotland are also probing whether a mother-of-two may have frozen to death after being locked outside her house.

The woman, 20, and her boyfriend were travelling on the A465 Heads of the Valleys road when they collided with another car at 11pm on Friday night.

Firemen and paramedics freed the woman from the wreckage and she was taken to Nevill Hall Hospital in Abergavenny, but doctors were unable to save her and her unborn baby.

Minicab driver Julie Silltoe, 49, died after a chunk of masonry fell from a building and crushed the roof of the car she was in, in Holborn, central London.

Avril Ramsay, 48, was spotted lying in her garden in Edinburgh by a neighbour but she died in the street shortly after paramedics arrived on Thursday morning.

The weather was so devastating it ripped up roads and demolished buildings. Norman Cook, the DJ known as Fatboy Slim, had to rescue the remains of his decking which was ripped from his home during the storm and dragged on to Hove seafront.

And forecasters have warned for another 2.5cm of rainfall today and plummeting temperatures as the winds and rain finally ease off in time for Sunday.

Norman Cook, the DJ known as Fatboy Slim, had to rescue the remains of his decking which was ripped from his home and dragged on to Hove seafront

Norman Cook, the DJ known as Fatboy Slim, had to rescue the remains of his decking which was ripped from his home and dragged on to Hove seafront

Norman Cook, the DJ known as Fatboy Slim, had to rescue the remains of his decking which was ripped from his home and dragged on to Hove seafront

Soldiers are putting up a dam in Staines to redirect water away from housing into fields

Soldiers are putting up a dam in Staines to redirect water away from housing into fields

Soldiers from 2nd Royal Tank Regiment and The Gurkhas   installing Geodesign flood barriers in Staines, which have been brought in from Sweden to help control flood waters

Soldiers from 2nd Royal Tank Regiment and The Gurkhas installing Geodesign flood barriers in Staines, which have been brought in from Sweden to help control flood waters

Environment agency staff move a pipe to help manage the flooding situation in Chertsey, southern England. Agencies and emergency services have been inundated with calls for help

Environment agency staff move a pipe to help manage the flooding situation in Chertsey, southern England. Agencies and emergency services have been inundated with calls for help

Dutch engineers install the remaining pumps at Dunball near Bridgewater in Somerset to help clear the Somerset Levels of the flood water

Dutch engineers install the remaining pumps at Dunball near Bridgewater in Somerset to help clear the Somerset Levels of the flood water

These particular pumps are being used to pump the water out of the King Sedgemoor Drain and into the River Parrett

These particular pumps are being used to pump the water out of the King Sedgemoor Drain and into the River Parrett

The Met Office said that winds reached speeds of 80mph in The Mumbles, south Wales and the Isle of Portland, off Dorset, last night, while across southern parts of England, winds reached 65-75mph.

But there will be some respite, as winds and rain are forecast to ease off. The wettest place in Britain last night was Capel Curig, Wales, which was hit with 54.2mm rain, while the rest of flooded England suffered between 20 and 30mm of rain.

A Met Office forecaster predicted clearer skies for tonight, which will cause temperatures dropping to -2C, meaning thousands will wake up to icy conditions on Sunday morning.

But by the afternoon, there will be spells of sunshine, with temperatures reaching up to 10C. From Tuesday, prolonged dry spells will finally appear, after weeks of rain and storms.

Speaking during a visit to flood-hit Chertsey in Surrey, Prime Minister David Cameron said the relief effort in the next 24 hours would be ‘vital’ as river levels were set to rise again.

He told Sky News: ‘This is a vast national effort where we’re bringing all the resources of our country together. What we do in the next 24 hours is vital because tragically the river levels will rise again so every sandbag delivered, every house helped, every flood barrier put in place can make a big difference.

‘Tragically these weather events have been hitting community and after community and doing that week after week.’

The approaching calm weather comes after  two people were killed in the last day. A cruise ship passenger died after 80mph winds whipped up freak waves in the English Channel and a woman was killed when part of a building collapsed on to a car in central London.

The Marco Polo, operated by Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV), was heading for its home port of Tilbury, Essex, when it was pummelled by the sto

Beach huts lie shattered and twisted after gale force winds broke down a retaining wall at Hove during storms that lashed the south coast

Beach huts lie shattered and twisted after gale force winds broke down a retaining wall at Hove during storms that lashed the south coast

The Army load one tonne bags of aggregate into the river Itchen upstream from Winchester in an attempt to partially dam the river

The Army load one tonne bags of aggregate into the river Itchen upstream from Winchester in an attempt to partially dam the river

The Environment Agency said it expects levels on slow responding rivers like the Thames, like the Severn, to stay high for a number of days to come

The Environment Agency said it expects levels on slow responding rivers like the Thames, like the Severn, to stay high for a number of days to come

The Army has been drafted in to help build flood defences in Burghfield, Berkshire in a bid to ward off yet more flooding

The Army has been drafted in to help build flood defences in Burghfield, Berkshire in a bid to ward off yet more flooding

At least something good has come out of it! As the rain clears and the sky brightens, a double rainbow appeared over Frating, Essex

At least something good has come out of it! As the rain clears and the sky brightens, a double rainbow appeared over Frating, Essex

Water crashed through a window injuring a number of the 735 passengers, who are mainly British. Apart from the two victims who were airlifted off, a number of passengers received minor injuries and were treated on board.

The vessel, which has been to the Amazon in South America and to the West Indies during its 42-day journey, is due to dock at Tilbury in the early hours of tomorrow.

The company said: ‘CMV regrets to advise that earlier today their cruise ship m/s Marco Polo, en-route to her home port of Tilbury from the Azores, was hit by a freak wave during adverse sea conditions in the south western approaches of the English Channel.

‘One elderly passenger has died and a further passenger has been airlifted for further shore-side medical assistance. Our thoughts are very much with these passengers and their families during this difficult time.’

A minicab driver has died and a man has been taken to hospital after a building fell on a car in Holborn, central London, the Metropolitan Police said today.

Her passengers, a 25-year-old man and a 24-year-old woman, are currently being treated in hospital.

Diners had to be rescued from a seaside cafe after the restaurant was overcome by a strong tidal surge and high winds. Cars parked outside were wrecked after they were washed away

Diners had to be rescued from a seaside cafe after the restaurant was overcome by a strong tidal surge and high winds. Cars parked outside were wrecked after they were washed away

The restaurant windows were shattered and the interior badly damaged by flood water and stones and debris blown up by the high winds on the beach

The restaurant windows were shattered and the interior badly damaged by flood water and stones and debris blown up by the high winds on the beach

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midshipman fishThe low-frequency mating call of the male midshipman fish may be behind the mysterious hum heard in Hythe, England, since August. Some residents say the sound is so bad that it keeps them up at night. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

 

Residents of the southern England town of Hythe, Hampshire, have been complaining about a mysterious humming sound since August. One resident told the BBC that the hum is “a pulsing, vibrating sort of sound, like a turbine….It sounds ridiculous but it does keep you awake all night.” The hum is so bad that some residents have to leave town at night if they want to get some decent sleep. No one knows exactly what’s causing the hum, but one theory is that it’s caused by male midshipman fish trying to attract a mate and intimidate other males.

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“It’s not beyond the realms of possibility,” Ben Wilson of the Scottish Association for Marine Science told the Telegraph. “There are certainly ‘sonic fish’ in the north Atlantic and the approaches to the English Channel.”

 

The sound that midshipman fish make has a very low frequency and a long wavelength, and is able to resonate through the ground and the walls of homes. (Listen to the midshipman fish’s amorous call here.) And because midshipman fish are nocturnal, sleep-deprived residents of Hythe are particularly unlucky.

 

Andy Bass, a Cornell Univeristy biologist who has made recordings of the fish, told NPR in 2009 about his experiences studying midshipman fish.

 

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Are fish having sex keeping part of a city awake? Amorous animals could be behind mystery humming that starts at 10pm and goes on all night

 

  • Residents in Hythe, Southampton, are being kept awake by the noise
  • Some have even moved away from the area and are staying with friends
  • Scientists are studying whether the noise could be caused by fish
  • Midshipman male fish are known to let out drone while searching for mate

By Daily Mail Reporter

 

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Amorous fish could be responsible for a mysterious humming noise keeping people awake at night.

Residents in a part of Southampton, Hamsphire, have been struggling to get to sleep because of the puzzling noise, which starts at 10pm and drones on all night.

Some people have even moved away from the affected area around Hythe and are sleeping on friends’ sofas to escape the nightmare.


Midshipman fish are believed to be responsible for a humming noise which is keeping residents in a part of Southampton awake at night

Midshipman fish are believed to be responsible for a humming noise keeping residents in a part of Southampton awake at night

 

The sound heard on Southampton Water (pictured) is said to be similar to the so-called West Seattle Hum which plagued parts of the US city this time last year

The sound heard on Southampton Water (pictured) is said to be similar to the so-called West Seattle Hum which plagued parts of the US city this time last year

 

Now scientists are studying whether the noise could be being caused by fish having sex in an estuary nearby.

Midshipman male fish let out a distinctive drone to let females know they are searching for a mate.

The noise can go on for hours and often increases in volume as competing males attempt to out-hum each other.

 

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Earth Watch Report  – Snow Storm

Ducks fly over the frozen Titisee Lake in Titisee-Neustadt, Germany, on February 27. Ducks fly over the frozen Titisee Lake in Titisee-Neustadt, Germany, on February 27.

12.03.2013 Snow Storm Germany Multiple Areas, [Southern regions] Damage level
Details

Snow Storm in Germany on Tuesday, 12 March, 2013 at 12:48 (12:48 PM) UTC.

Description
Heavy snow in several parts of Germany caused travel disruption, with 161 flights cancelled at Frankfurt airport, Europe’s third busiest. Public transport in Berlin was affected with several regional trains cancelled or severely delayed. There were also a spate of crashes on icy German roads with several people seriously hurt and one death, according to police.

12.03.2013 Snow Storm France Multiple Areas, [Northern regions] Damage level
Details

Snow Storm in France on Tuesday, 12 March, 2013 at 12:50 (12:50 PM) UTC.

Description
Nearly a third of France’s regions were on alert and the government activated a ministerial crisis group to deal with mounting disruptions. Weather service Meteo France described the snowfall — coming only eight days before the official start of spring — as “remarkable for the season” and warned that alerts would probably remain in place until at least Wednesday. More than 2,000 people were stranded in their cars overnight as heavy snow paralysed roads in Normandy and Brittany, with many spending the night in emergency shelters. “There are cars in front, there are cars behind. We’re in a film, it’s like the end of the world,” trapped driver Michel told France Bleu radio from the Manche region. At least 66,000 homes in Normandy and Brittany were without power, following snowfalls of 20 to 60 centimetres (eight to 24 inches). The snow caused major transport disruptions as it moved into Paris, with authorities urging the seven million commuters who use public transport every day to stay home. The city’s two main airports, Charles de Gaulle and Orly, said they had cancelled up to a quarter of flights. A traffic accident near Lille injured 14 people and a 58-year-old homeless man was found dead, presumably from the cold, outside a building in the Breton town of Saint-Brieuc. Hundreds were also stuck in their cars overnight in Britain and Eurostar train services to the continent were disrupted.

12.03.2013 Snow Storm United Kingdom Multiple Areas, [South-eastern regions] Damage level
Details

Snow Storm in United Kingdom on Tuesday, 12 March, 2013 at 12:59 (12:59 PM) UTC.

Description
In Britain, drivers including former Eurovision song contest winner Cheryl Baker were trapped for more than 10 hours as ice, snow and freezing winds descended on southeastern England on Monday and Tuesday. Police, rescue services, snow ploughs and gritting lorries battled to help the stricken motorists in temperatures as low as -3C. The counties of Sussex and Kent bordering London were worst affected with roads including stretches of the M23 motorway near Gatwick Airport under 10 centimetres of snow. Singer Cheryl Baker, formerly of the band Bucks Fizz, was among those caught up in the chaos as she tried to reach Brighton to pick up her children. “We took 10 hours to do a one-hour journey,” she told ITV. Eurostar said services of the train that runs under the English channel were suspended “due to extreme weather conditions”.

12.03.2013 Snow Storm Belgium [Statewide] Damage level
Details

Snow Storm in Belgium on Tuesday, 12 March, 2013 at 12:49 (12:49 PM) UTC.

Description
In Belgium, the snowstorms caused massive traffic disruptions, with vehicles backed up on 1,600 kilometres (1,000 miles) of freeways due to snowdrifts and ice. Buses and trains were cancelled or delayed in Brussels and other towns and the high-speed Thalys service linking Paris and Brussels was suspended. Long traffic jams because of snow and ice also snaked along motorways in the southern Netherlands, hampering travel to and from Belgium after an unseasonal fall of more than 10 centimetres (four inches) of snow overnight. Forecasters predicted that cold weather records were set to be broken again after Monday, the coldest March 11 in the southern Netherlands since 1928, Dutch media reported.

Snow Storm in Belgium on Tuesday, 12 March, 2013 at 12:49 (12:49 PM) UTC.

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Updated: Tuesday, 12 March, 2013 at 13:00 UTC
Description
An overnight snowstorm in northwestern Europe caused record traffic jams in Belgium, stalled high-speed international trains and left British and French drivers sleeping in their cars. The Belgian breakdown assistance association Touring said the total length of jams on highways and major roads at their rush-hour peak hit 1,670 km (1,038 miles), beating by far the previous record of 1,285 km set on February 3 last year. “There was too much snow at the wrong moment. If it snows a lot at night, the salt doesn’t work as there aren’t enough cars to spread it around,” said Touring spokesman Danny Smagghe. On a normal Tuesday, total morning rush-hour traffic jams average 250-270 km. Brussels’ two main railway stations were closed. The high-speed Eurostar service connecting London with the French and Belgian capitals and the Thalys line linking Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam in the Netherlands and Cologne in Germany were both suspended.

Heavy snow snarls travel in northern Europe

By Laura Smith-Spark, Stephanie Halasz and Alexander Felton, CNN
updated 5:02 PM EDT, Tue March 12, 2013
A couple walk on a snowy sidewalk on Place de la Concorde in Paris, on March 12, during a heavy snow storm. Twenty-six regions in northwest and northern France were put on orange alert because of heavy snowfall.
A couple walk on a snowy sidewalk on Place de la Concorde in Paris, on March 12, during a heavy snow storm. Twenty-six regions in northwest and northern France were put on orange alert because of heavy snowfall.

A cyclist makes his way along a snowy track near Ladmanlow, United Kingdom, on March 10 as a return of freezing temperatures and snow delay springtime weather for Great Britain. A cyclist makes his way along a snowy track near Ladmanlow, United Kingdom, on March 10 as a return of freezing temperatures and snow delay springtime weather for Great Britain.

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Germany’s Frankfurt airport, a major European hub, cancels 700 flights
  • Eurostar suspends its high-speed train services Tuesday because of bad weather
  • Bus and train services to airports in Paris start to recover after snow disruption
  • Motorists are stranded in southeast England as snow and ice paralyze roads

London (CNN) — Swaths of northern Europe were in the grip of snow, ice and high winds Tuesday, causing serious disruption to road, rail and air travelers.

High-speed train operator Eurostar, which runs services linking Paris, Brussels and London, among other destinations, has canceled the rest of its services Tuesday and told passengers to stay at home.

“Severe weather conditions overnight in Northern France and Belgium have led to the closure of the high speed line,” a notice on the company’s website said.

“Passengers will not be able to travel on Eurostar services today and should not come to our stations.

About 10,000 passengers are likely to be affected as a result of the cancellation of around 24 out of 27 scheduled trains Tuesday, Eurostar spokeswoman Lucy Drake said.

The bad weather may also affect services Wednesday, she said, with further cancellations or extended journey times possible

Passengers affected by the disruption will be offered exchanges or refunds, Drake said, and are urged to consider traveling next week if possible.

 

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by Alex Peel

Scientists have found tiny fragments of plastic in the digestive systems of fish pulled from the English Channel.

Fish habitat

The discovery, by a team from Plymouth University and the UK Marine Biological Association, highlights the growing problem of plastic contamination of marine environments.

Of 504 fish examined, more than a third was found to contain small pieces of plastic less than one millimetre in size, referred to by scientists as microplastics.

‘We have previously shown that on shorelines worldwide and on the sea bed and in the water column around the UK, these tiny fragments of plastic are widespread,’ says Professor Richard Thompson.

‘Our recent reseach has shown that such fragments are also being ingested by fish. Laboratory studies on mussels have shown that some organisms can retain plastic after ingestion, hence microplastic debris could also accumulate in natural populations.’

This, say researchers, could carry serious physical consequences for fish, creating blockages in their digestive systems or giving them a false sense of being full.

It could also make it easier for pollutants in surrounding waters to make their way into organisms, as chemicals latch on to the plastic fragments.

The study, published in Marine Pollution Bulletin, looked at fish caught ten kilometres off the coast of Plymouth.

 

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