UK storms: lorry driver loses life as more strong winds expected today

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Storm Dudley battered parts of the United Kingdom yesterday, presenting dangerous conditions for motorists and of course, truck drivers in particular. The strong winds cost the life of a lorry driver during an unloading accident, while a number of trucks were blown over. Now Storm Eunice has landed, lorry drivers will have to face the elements once more, with the strongest winds expected in the South-East of England as well as the South-Wales coastline and Cornwall.

UK storms: lorry driver loses life as more strong winds expected today
Photo © Copyright David Baird and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence (image represents another storm and is for illustrative purposes only)

Yesterday’s tragedy, in which a lorry driver in his sixties lost his life, occurred in Solihull. According to a police statement published by ITV news, the driver fell 12 feet after being blown by strong winds:

“A man in his 60s was attended to by paramedics at the scene, but was sadly pronounced dead a short time later. The Health and Safety Executive was informed and it is believed to be an industrial accident. Our thoughts remain with the man’s family and friends,” the police’s statement reads.

Elsewhere, the BBC has released footage of a Palletline lorry being blown over, while a Hermes truck was hit by a falling tree.

Unfortunately, the dangerous conditions are not yet over as another storm is expected to cause difficulties today.

In the worst affected areas referred to above, the MET Office has warned about the following:

  1. There is a good chance that flying debris could result in a danger to life
  2. Damage to buildings and homes is likely, with roofs blown off and power lines brought down
  3. Roads, bridges and railway lines are likely to close, with delays and cancellations to bus, train, ferry services and flights
  4. There is a good chance that power cuts, possibly prolonged, could occur , perhaps affecting other services, such as mobile phone coverage
  5. Large waves are likely and beach material is likely to be thrown onto sea fronts, coastal roads and properties, and flooding of some coastal properties seems likely.
  6. It is likely there will be falling branches and some uprooted trees

Those concerned about their journey and what to expect can find the latest information on the storm here on the MET Office website.


National Highways has told drivers of high-sided HGVs, caravans and motorcycles to check the weather and driving conditions before deciding to on their journey.

“We’re encouraging drivers to check the latest weather and travel conditions before setting off on journeys and consider if their journey is necessary and can be delayed until conditions improve. If you do intend to travel, then plan your trip and take extra care, allowing more time for your journey. In high winds, there’s a particular risk to lorries, caravans and motorbikes so we’d advise drivers of these vehicles to slow down. Drivers of other vehicles should be aware of sudden gusts of wind which can affect handling and braking, and give high-sided vehicles, caravans, and motorbikes plenty of space. In the event of persistent high winds we may need to close bridges to traffic for a period, so please be alert for warnings of closures and follow signed diversion routes,” said Sean Martell, Head of service delivery at National Highways.

A number of important bridges and roads are closed at the time of publication, including the A14 Orwell Bridge in Suffolk, the QE11 Bridge in Dartford and the M48 Severn Bridge.

The storm is also expected to be particularly strong in Kent, in turn causing disruption to cross-channel ferry services and congestion leading to the region’s ports. According to the Road Haulage Association, Operation TAP is likely to be deployed again.

UPDATE 09.30AM CET: P&O, DFDS and Irish Ferries have cancelled sailings this morning due to the adverse weather conditions

Irish Ferries cancellation details can be found here.


Photo © Copyright David Baird and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence (image represents another storm and is for illustrative purposes only)

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