Tag Archive | Sky News

Tropical Storm Henri Threatens To Lash UK

National Hurricane Center map of Henri
Henri is moving across the Atlantic. Pic: National Hurricane Center
Tropical Storm Henri could batter Britain next week, bringing strong winds and a deluge of rain.
Henri is currently off the coast of North America but will move northeastwards over the weekend – potentially bringing the UK some wild weather.
It all comes down to how it interacts with the jet stream, said Sky News weather producer Joanna Robinson.
“The remnants of Tropical Storm Henri will move towards Europe next week, potentially reaching the UK by the middle of the week.
“This area of low pressure will contain tropical air and could produce a lot of rain, but it’s exact state and movement is still very uncertain.
“It all depends on its interaction with the jet stream along the way.
“If the jet stream is south enough, it could invigorate the low pressure system, bringing stormy conditions. However, if the jet stream has a more northerly track then it’ll have little interaction and won’t amount to much more than a wet and blustery autumn day.
“It’s not unusual to see the remnants of tropical storms over the UK at this time of the year.”
Henri is the eighth storm of the Atlantic hurricane season – a tropical storm is one level below hurricane classification, with winds of up to 73mph.
Courtesy of Sky News

Plane Crashes And Bursts Into Flames Killing 4 At Blackbushe Airport, UK

A pilot and three passengers have died after a small private jet crashed into a car auction as it was trying to land.
A blaze broke out at the auction site based at Blackbushe Airport at 3.09pm when the Phenom 300 plane ploughed into a full car park. 
All four people on board the plane were killed, said Inspector Olga Venner from Hampshire Police. She added that the airfield has been closed.
Sky News footage showed the aftermath of the crash near the end of the runway and debris from the jet could be seen strewn among the dozens of severely damaged cars.
Map showing Blackbushe airport in Hampshire, where a Phenom 300 light aircraft has crashed into a car auction
Andrew Thomas, who was paying for a car at the time in the reception, told Sky News it was an “aggressive fire” and there was “explosion after explosion”.
He said: “I could see one of the wings sticking up and it was in flames and four, five cars around it were all in flames.
“That soon spread. After 10 or 12 minutes the fire brigade got there and managed to get on top of it quickly, which was fortunate because at one stage it felt like the fire was going to rip across the whole car park.”
The A30, which backs on to the airport, has been closed following the incident and motorists have been asked by police to avoid the area.
Robert Belcher, a local aviation enthusiast, said he was driving home when he saw black smoke billowing from the site.
“I could see the plume of smoke waving from about five miles away and was hoping it was just a car fire rather than an aircraft accident.”
He added: “Apparently the aircraft was landing and just didn’t stop. At the end of the runway there is a car park because the airport is used for car auctions and it’s gone into there.”
Jenny Cole posted on Facebook: “This is just behind our house – sky is black with smoke. I really hope everyone involved is ok.”
Hampshire police and the Air Accident Investigation Branch are undertaking a joint probe to determine the cause of the accident, said Inspector Venner.
She added: “There were four people on board, including the pilot. Sadly there were no survivors. There have been no injuries on the ground.”
An airport spokesman said: “Blackbushe Airport confirmed that a Phenom 300 Jet with four persons on board crashed near the end of the runway around 3.09pm while attempting to make a landing.”
A number of ambulances were at the scene, including an air ambulance, during the incident.
The private airport in Camberley hosts various events from model airshows to drag racing.
Courtesy of Sky News

Massive Explosions Rocks Mill Plant In Cheshire, UK

Explosion Alert

Four people are unaccounted for after two explosions and a fire at a wood mill in Bosley, Cheshire, say rescue services.

Three people have been taken to hospital with burns and a major incident has been declared around the site at Wood Flour Mills on Tunstall Road.

Specialist search teams are being used to find the missing people and fire officials say there is the risk of further explosions.

Fire service teams said the scene was one of devastation when they arrived, with one four-storey building flattened.

They say 20 people were working at the mill site at the time. Crews treated the walking wounded as the site was evacuated.

A 29-year-old woman suffered serious burns and blast injuries to her head, face, arms and chest, West Midlands Ambulance Service said.

She was flown to Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, for further specialist treatment, while two other people who suffered burns have also been taken to hospital.

Fifteen fire engines are at the scene. 

People living nearby and a local school have been told to close their windows and doors because of smoke coming from the site, south of Macclesfield.

Witness Damian Malone told Sky News: “I heard this massive explosion, to find this big fireball rising from the building.

“The ground was actually shaking. It lasted for two, three or four minutes but as the ground seemed to settle there was another explosion on top of that and black smoke billowing out everywhere.

“The sound of the explosion was unreal, scary.”

Local resident Charlotte Maher told Sky News: “We felt the house shake. We thought it was an earthquake. Then there was black smoke and we heard sirens.

“I got a call from my mum who works at Bosley (Primary) School, and they’d had a visit from the police who told them there’d been a major incident and everyone should keep their windows and doors shut because of the smoke.”

More than 40 pupils are at the school, which is about a mile from the explosion site

Student Charli Alston, 18, was walking her dog with a friend when she saw heard a “huge bang”.

“It sounded like a thunder cloud,” she said. “We didn’t know what it was because it was sunny then. We looked over and there were massive plumes of flames. Almost as high as the hill next to it.

“I couldn’t tell you how high the flames were, but I’d say a good 70 metres into the air. Huge. The sound was really really loud and there was loads of billowing black smoke.

“We phoned 999 straight away, because it was pretty terrifying watching it.”

Fire officials say they were called to reports of an explosion at the mill at about 9.10am.

It said fire engines from Congleton, Bollington, Winsford, Crewe and Macclesfield attended, including an aerial appliance from Macclesfield and one from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service.

North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust said it had sent “at least six ambulances, two rapid response vehicles, two doctors, four managers and the air ambulance” to the scene.

Courtesy of Sky News


British School Children In Belgium Bus Crash

34 British Children On Crashed Bus
One person has been killed after a bus carrying British school children crashed in Belgium, according to reports.
It is believed there were 34 British pupils on the bus, along with six adults and two drivers.
The bus hit a bridge support and rolled over on the E40 motorway near Middelkerke, in West Flanders at 9.45am local time this morning
A bus overturned while carrying British school children in Belgium
The scene where the bus still lies overturned
It is understood there are several people still inside the vehicle, with emergency services at the scene.
The coach is operated by Northern Ireland-based Richmond Coaches, but Sky News has been told the school children are from England.
A spokesman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said “We are aware of reports of a bus crash in Belgium involving British nationals.
“We are working with the Belgian authorities to establish details of the incident”.
Courtesy of Sky News

Hundreds Feared Dead In Nepal Earthquake

Disaster Alert

A magnitude 7.9 earthquake in Nepal has caused extensive damage in the capital Kathmandu, bringing down buildings and walls.
At least 50 people are trapped under the rubble of the city’s iconic nine-storey Dharahara tower, which was brought down in the quake. 
Police have removed several bodies from the 19th Century tourist site, also known as the Bhimsen Tower.
Rescue workers attend the scene at the collapsed Dharara Tower
Several bodies have been removed from the landmark Dharahara tower
Elsewhere at least two people are confirmed to have died, with more fatalities feared.
A 15-year-girl was killed in a building collapse in India near the Nepal border, while another child died when a statue fell in a park outside Kathmandu.
The quake is also understood to have triggered avalanches on Mount Everest.
Mountaineer Alex Gavan tweeted from Mount Pumori, about 8 km (5 miles) west of Mount Everest: “Everest base camp huge earthquake then huge avalanche from pumori. Running for life from my tent. Unhurt. Many many people up the mountain.”
The quake struck 80km (50 miles) east of the central city of Pokhara, close to the capital, the US Geological Survey said. 
Dozens of people with injuries have been brought to Kathmandu’s main hospital, with many forced to wait outside on the street for treatment.
A number of centuries-old temples have been destroyed and there are unconfirmed reports that the densely-populated city’s main airport has closed, according to Sky News’ India producer Neville Lazarus.
Nepal’s Information Minister Minendra Rijal has told India’s NDTV station that rescue teams are at the scene.
‘Surreal’ Moment At Everest Base
Residents have been warned to stay outdoors, with more aftershocks feared.
“It was a pretty massive earthquake here, the strongest I’ve ever felt in my life,” photojournalist Nayantara, who is in Pokhara, told Sky News.
“We’ve all gathered on a tennis court which is the only open space available to us close by,” she said.
“There is quite a lot of damage. The building I was in has quite a lot of cracks in it. There was a construction site right next to us and several of the new ways have fallen and there was an injury.”
Another witness tweeted: “LOTS of shaking. Hid under table, then ran outside. Still feel like swaying. Cables/walls down.”
“Lots of panic, people wandering in the streets,” @jonk said, adding that people were gathering in the middle of an intersection to avoid falling debris.
According to Sky’s Neville Lazarus tremors could be felt in India’s capital New Dehli and other northern cities.
“For about three to four minutes buildings in Dehli experienced tremors and residents rushed out of their buildings,” he said.
“Everything was shaking.”
India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has tweeted: “We are in the process of finding more information and are working to reach out to those affected, both at home & in Nepal.”
Strong tremors were also felt as far away as Pakistan and Bangladesh.
Courtesy of Sky News

Hurricane-force winds of 113mph batters Scotland, UK

Severe Weather Alert

Up to 85,000 homes in Scotland are left without power as heavy winds from an Atlantic jet stream batter parts of Britain.
Hurricane-force winds have brought gusts of around 110mph to Scotland as extreme weather from across the Atlantic reached Britain.
A gust of 113mph was recorded at Stornoway, the strongest there since records began in 1970.
A train hit by a tree near Cupar in Scotland. The tree was cleared later
The ferocious gales have been stirred up by an extra-powerful jet stream triggered by plunging temperatures in the US hitting warmer air in the south.
The winds brought down power lines and caused travel disruption.
Sky News’ North of England Correspondent Becky Johnson reported: “A group of salmon farmers in Oban Bay abandoned plans to go out fishing, saying safety had to come before business.
“Many ferries on routes out of Oban were cancelled, with local skipper Brendan McGuckin telling Sky News: ‘Not many passengers would want to travel anyway when the water’s like this.'”
She added: “Businesses round the bay had sandbags lining their doors as waves lapped over the harbour wall at high tide.”
Hundreds of engineers throughout Scotland battled the strong winds to repair power lines as up to 85,000 properties were left without power.
ScotRail suspended some of its rail services “for safety reasons” as Network Rail staff went out to inspect the tracks.
The Forth Road Bridge was closed for some hours when a van blew over and Aberdeen Police said a number of trees had been blown down on Aberdeenshire and Moray roads.
Police in Inverness said several roads and bridges, including the Skye Bridge and Dornoch Bridge, had been closed in northern Scotland and travel conditions in the Highlands and Islands were “hazardous”.
The winds followed Met Office amber warnings for northern and central Scotland, where flood warns were also in place.
England, Wales and Northern Ireland were included in Met Office yellow “be prepared” warnings.
The bad weather led to delays to CrossCountry trains running between Berwick-upon-Tweed and Newcastle, while in Kent a  broken-down train at Westgate-On-Sea caused hold-ups to services between Margate and Chatham.
Lashing rain is expected to continue along the west coast and over the weekend as a second storm is predicted to bring more gale-force winds on Saturday.
Forecasters say conditions could rival the weather that battered parts of southern England at the end of 2013.
The current storm brought travel disruption to the Irish Republic with Dublin airport suspending arrivals and departures on Thursday night, and one flight being forced to abort its landing.
Courtesy of Sky News

Plane’s engine explodes forcing a dramatic emergency landing at Long Beach Airport, USA

Breaking News

Twilight actor Jackson Rathbone has taken to social media to describe the horrifying moment his plane was forced to make an emergency landing after one if its engines apparently exploded.
The actor – who played Jasper Hale in the films – has given a full account of the traumatic ordeal on his Who Say account, as his Jet Blue flight 1416, travelling from Austin to Long Beach in the US, filled with smoke mid-flight.
Jackson, who was travelling with his wife and son, admitted he recited the Lord’s Prayer as air stewardesses manually deployed oxygen masks which had failed to automatically drop down.
He wrote: “We were told to brace as we careened sharply back towards land. Guided by our pilot, and I believe our guardian angels, we landed safely.”
He added: “Over the PA, the pilot yelled “Brace!” The stewardesses made it into a chant.  
I wrapped my arm around us. And we braced.”
According to Sky News, four people were injured in the incident – but it seems Jackson escaped unharmed.
He goes on to describe how the doors were thrown open and the passengers had to escape down the inflatable ramp out the doors.
Long Beach Airport spokeswoman Stephanie Montuya-Morisky told Sky News the emergency slides were deployed and all 142 passengers and five crew members were able to get off.

Massive crack in the Earth opens in Mexico

20.08.14 Massive Crack In Mexico

Spectacular footage has emerged showing an enormous crack in the Earth stretching across an arid stretch of northwest Mexico.

The giant chasm, located near Hermosillo in the state of Sonora, is around a half-mile long and up to 26 feet deep in some places, Sky News reported.

Eerie video footage shot by a drone was posted to YouTube earlier this week.

The camera traces along the trench, catching befuddled motorists standing near its edge.

The crack is 16 feet wide in some places and has forced drivers on the local highway to take long detours in order to get around it, Sky News said.

It wasn’t clear what caused the massive fissure.

Some surveyors said they believed it might have opened in an earthquake that struck the area Sunday, while others mused a leaky levee might have caused the ground to collapse.


Sinkhole Keeps Motorway Closed Over Safety Fears, UK

15-metre deep pothole in central reservation closes M2 - Highways Agency

A 15ft-deep sinkhole has closed the M2 – and experts claim the wet weather could be to blame.


Dozens of engineers are investigating the hole near Sittingbourne in Kent but the Highways Agency is refusing to state when the motorway could reopen.


It is unlikely to be in time for this morning’s rush hour.


“We’re not putting a timescale on it at the moment,” Highways Agency spokesperson Kelly Barnes told Sky News.


“We’re investigating the cause and then it’s a case of seeing how we repair it. 


“One of the main reasons we closed the motorway, which we never do lightly, is for safety reasons.


“People should anticipate that it will remain closed overnight and into rush hour on Wednesday.”

The M2 has been closed by a 15ft-sinkhole.

One potential solution could be to pour foam concrete into the hole – but more extensive structural work could be required.


Engineers are being aided by fire crews who have provided camera equipment enabling them to scan the hole.


Long tailbacks developed either side of the 10-mile stretch following the closure ahead of Tuesday afternoon’s rush hour.


Drivers travelling to and from Dover are advised to use the M20. 


A representative from the AA believes the hole, which is almost 17x7ft across, could have been caused by the extreme weather being endured by much of southern England.


“The M2 started operating in 1965 and I am not aware of any previous collapses so perhaps this is yet another casualty of the exceptionally wet weather,” said AA roads policy head Paul Watters.


“We hope the Highways Agency can quickly resolve the problem as this is a key route to the port of Dover and to east Kent.”

High Wycombe sinkhole

Professor Amir Allani, professor of civil engineering at Greenwich University, agrees with the AA.


He said: “It may be due to the current rain and flooding underground has created the erosion which, in time, has facilitated the layers above the weak strata to collapse.”


A signed diversion is now in place via the A249, the M20, the A20, the A252 and the A251.


Motoring organisations have campaigned for more funding to fix and prevent holes on the road network, but the AA claims no amount of money would have prevented Tuesday’s incident.


“Thankfully this was on the central reservation,” said company president Edmund King.


“If a hole of this nature had opened up on a carriageway it could well have led to tragedy.


“I don’t think this is anything to do with potholes or general maintenance.


“There seems to have been some structural anomaly – perhaps some sort of geological fault or an old mineshaft.


“Clearly, it’s a concern that this has happened on a busy motorway that leads to and from the coast.


“Engineers will want to deal with this as soon as possible.


“If the stretch of motorway stays shut it will cause traffic problems, but safety must come first.”


Earlier this month, a sinkhole measuring 30ft-deep swallowed a car after opening on the driveway of a house in High Wycombe.


Nobody was inside the VW Lupo when the ground on Main Road in Walter’s Ash gave way.



Six danger-to-life flood warnings are in place as storms leave thousands without power and cause “major damage” to rail tracks

bad weather in Devon

Thousands of homes are without power in southwest England and Ireland and commuters face travel disruption as heavy rain and winds of up to 80mph continue.

Hundreds of Western Power Distribution staff have been working through the night to restore power to 6,000 homes, down from around 44,000 which are mainly in Devon and Cornwall.

“Airborne debris” had hit overhead power lines, said a company spokesman.

In Ireland 20,000 homes were left without power, now down to 8,000, as the second city, Cork, was inundated for the third time in five days.

Forecasters say that heavy rain and gale force winds will continue to bring travel disruption and flooding to coastal areas over the next few days.

Jeff Penhaligon, harbourmaster at East Looe in Cornwall, told Sky News the storm was “really hammering at the moment”.

Somerset Floods

Both East and West Looe took a battering overnight and were now awaiting a mid morning high tide.

He warned people to keep away from the waves, saying: “The sea is horrendous. Watch it by all means but stay well back.”

The Met Office has issued a severe weather warning, with southern and western areas of the UK and the east coast of Ireland most at risk.

Gusts of 60-70mph are expected today across parts of south Wales, Devon and Cornwall, Somerset, Dorset.

First Great Western Trains has advised passengers not to travel west of Exeter St Davids station because of “major” track damage at Dawlish.

Southeastern has also imposed a 40mph speed limit on parts of its network until Wednesday evening.

Fallen trees, floods and landslips are possible, said the company.

Sky News weather producer Joanna Robinson said: “Eighty-mile-per-hour gusts are possible for areas surrounding the Irish Sea, the Celtic Sea and the English Channel.”

Will Stephens, RNLI Coastal Safety Staff Officer, said: “With more stormy weather forecast, we’re asking people to take extra care if they’re going down to the coast.

Winter weather Feb 3rd

“Rough seas and extreme weather might look exciting, but getting too close can be risky. So respect the water and, in particular, avoid exposed places where big waves could sweep you off your feet.”

The heavy rain is likely to bring more misery to flooded areas of Somerset, which were visited on Tuesday by Prince Charles.

The Environment Agency – which has been accused of not doing enough to help Somerset flood victims – has issued six severe flood warnings in place across Cornwall, Devon and Dorset.

Across the southern half of the UK there are 76 less severe flood warnings, and 219 flood alerts.

The agency said on its website: “Today and tomorrow high tides, a positive surge, strong winds and large waves combine to bring a risk of significant impacts from coastal flooding to much of south-west England and southern England coastlines and minor impacts to the west Wales coastline.”

‘Danger to life’ warnings cover six areas: South Devon from Start Point to Dawlish Warren and from Exmouth to Lyme Regis, Weymouth seafront, Lyme Regis harbour, West Bay harbour, and the South Cornwall coast between Lands End and Plymouth.

A high tide is expected in those areas this morning.