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At least 12 dead after storm brings hurricane-force winds to Western Europe


LONDON (AP) — Crews cleared fallen trees and worked to restore power to around 400,000 people in Britain as western Europe cleaned up on Saturday after one of the most devastating storms in years.

At least 12 people have been killed, many by falling trees, in Ireland, Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany. Named Storm Eunice by the UK and Irish weather services, and Storm Zeynep in Germany, Friday’s storm was the second to hit the region in a week.

Winds toppled the spire of a church in Wells, southwest England, ripped off parts of the domed roof of London’s O2 Arena and left a trail of downed trees and damaged buildings in many countries.

Sven Good, 23, looks out of his bedroom window at the damage to the family home a day after a 400-year-old oak tree in the garden was uprooted by Storm Eunice, in Stondon Massey, near Brentwood, Essex , England, Saturday 19th February 2022.

Nicholas.T.Ansell/PA via AP

A gust of 122 miles per hour (196 kilometers per hour) was tentatively recorded on the Isle of Wight on Friday. If confirmed, it would be the highest ever recorded in England. Hurricane-force winds start at 74 mph.

The Met Office weather service said stronger winds would hit the southern coasts of England and Wales on Saturday, with the potential for further damage, while snow and ice could cause disruption further north.

The UK’s National Rail Association said “routes across most of Britain” remained affected by the weather on Saturday morning, with disruption continuing throughout the day.

Transport in Germany also remained severely disrupted, with rail operator Deutsche Bahn saying no long-distance trains would run north of Dortmund, Hanover and Berlin until at least 6 p.m.

The storm claimed at least three lives in Germany, including a man who fell while trying to repair a damaged roof and a driver whose car slammed into a fallen tree across a road.

At least 12 dead after storm brings hurricane-force winds to Western Europe
Debris is seen in a bedroom of Dominic Good’s house a day after a 400-year-old oak tree in the garden was uprooted by storm Eunice, in Stondon Massey, near Brentwood, Essex, England, Saturday February 19 2022.

Nicholas.T.Ansell/PA via AP

In the northwestern city of Bremen, a 55-metre (180ft) crane fell on an unfinished office building.

A cleanup was also underway in the Netherlands, where four people died as Eunice crossed the country on Friday.

Rail services, interrupted during the storm, remained disrupted, with the company responsible for rail infrastructure saying it was working hard to repair “significant” damage to tracks and overhead power lines.

At least 12 dead after storm brings hurricane-force winds to Western Europe
Waves crash against Porthcawl Seawall and Lighthouse in Porthcawl, Bridgend, Wales, Britain, as Storm Eunice makes landfall on Friday February 18, 2022.

Engineers had to assess damage to the roof of a stadium in The Hague where professional football team ADO The Hague plays its home matches after parts of the structure collapsed.

Across the country, crews moved fallen trees and began repairing storm-damaged roofs.

Michael Corder in The Hague and Geir Moulson in Berlin contributed to this story.



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