Posted 12th February 2014 | 1 Comment

West Coast closed north of Preston as storm swept in

NETWORK RAIL closed the West Coast Main Line to all traffic between Preston and Penrith from 19.00 this evening for at least two hours, as hurricane-force winds swept across Wales and north west England. Network Rail said the line had been closed because of the risk from flying debris and potential damage to signalling and overhead lines.
Lines in north and west Wales had been closed during the afternoon in reaction to the weather. Virgin Trains withdrew its services between Bangor and Holyhead at 14.00 as the storm approached.

Also in Wales, the train service was suspended between Fernhill and Aberdare because of flooding at Cwmbach, while services were suspended around 14.00 on lines in west Wales, affecting Barmouth, Aberystwyth, the Heart of Wales route and stations west of Llanelli. There were also delays near Cardiff because of a tree on the line at Pontyclun. Blanket speed restrictions have been imposed on all Welsh lines, where services are still running at all, and also on all routes west of Exeter.

A number of trees have blocked lines in south east England, and one was reported to have been struck by a train near Bracknell. Train operators in the areas affected by the storm are advising people not to travel for the time being.

Meanwhile, Network Rail has been advising passengers to 'avoid Paddington', as a combination of river flooding and rising groundwater continues to hamper services between London, Reading and Oxford.

Only four or five trains an hour are able to run on the Great Western Main Line through Maidenhead, which normally sees more than twice that number, because signalling equipment has been swamped.

As concern continues about rising water levels in much of the Thames Valley, the line from Staines to Windsor has remained closed because of serious flooding at Datchet.

Today saw the start of a doubled air service between London and Cornwall, in a bid to compensate for the loss of the county's only rail route to the rest of the country following the storm damage at Dawlish. Flybe is now providing six flights a day between Gatwick and Newquay, and will do so for at least the next two weeks.

Reader Comments:

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  • Andrew Blurton, stafford

    Should all power supplies be switched off now & nothing running at all if all railway lines are going to be affected with the road network now!!