Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

North East Lashed by Wind and Rain; and Today Is Not Likely to Be Any Better

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

North East Lashed by Wind and Rain; and Today Is Not Likely to Be Any Better

Article excerpt

Byline: Liz Walker ? 0191 201 6499 ?

THE North East is once again on flood alert with forecasters warning a month's rain could fall in just 24 hours.

Up to three inches of rain was expected to fall in some parts of the region last night, whipped up by gusts of wind hitting 60-70mph. Huge waves battered the coastline and driving conditions were made treacherous, with delays caused by accidents and fallen trees.

And the weather system, said to be due to an area of low pressure rotating slowly over the country, is expected to continue to bring heavy downpours and high winds throughout today, Yesterday drivers were delayed by tailbacks after several accidents on the A1 close to Durham City.

And last night flood alerts were issued for rivers across the region.

At 7pm last night police in Durham reported that the A688 near Bishop Auckland FC's ground had flooded. The B1283 between Sherburn Hill and Haswell Plough also flooded near to the wind turbines.

The Met Office predicted that up to 100mm -- more than three inches - of rain could fall over higher ground and officers are keeping watch on the River Tyne and River Wear catchment areas.

The Environment Agency warned communities to remain vigilant and check its website for the latest flood alerts.

Teams have also been mobilised across the country to check on flood defences, clear any river blockages and closely monitor river levels.

A spokesman for the Met Office explained that this latest weather system is due to an area of low pressure which moved in from the Atlantic bringing bands of heavy rain and strong winds.

He said: "Despite some reports to the contrary, this low is not what's left of tropical storm Nadine, but is a completely separate entity.

"Some warm tropical air dragged over by Nadine was sucked up into the low pressure, however, giving it some extra energy - essentially increasing its potential for strong winds and rain.

"This low pressure is lingering for longer than we would often see.

"The reason for this is down to the position of the jet stream, a narrow band of fast moving winds high up in the atmosphere which 'steers' weather systems. …

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