Huricane Xaver ravages Europe

2013-12-06 20:11
A man speaks with a passing woman as he stands in floodwaters in Tewkesbury. (Justin Tallis, AFP)

A man speaks with a passing woman as he stands in floodwaters in Tewkesbury. (Justin Tallis, AFP)

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Warsaw - The death toll from hurricane-force storm Xaver sweeping across northern Europe rose to six on Friday when high winds hurled a tree limb against a car, killing three people, local emergency services said.

Xaver blasted into northern Europe late on Thursday after disrupting transport and power in northern Britain and flooding east coast areas in what meteorologists said could prove the worst storm to hit the continent in years.

Two people were killed in Britain as winds reached speeds of 225km/h. A truck driver died when his vehicle overturned and a man was killed by a falling tree.

In western Denmark the 72-year-old female passenger of a truck died when the vehicle overturned in howling winds.

In Poland, three people died and one was injured in the town of Poraj when a tree limb was blown onto their car," Piotr Cholajda at the state fire-fighting headquarters said.

He said high winds had downed electricity lines, leaving more than 100 000 people around the eastern European country of 38 million without power.

Evacuations

The Polish Institute of Meteorology and Water Management forecast wind gusts on Friday of up to 110km/h inland and up to 135km/h off Poland's Baltic seacoast.

Poland's flagship airline LOT cancelled some domestic and European flights on Friday due to "unexpected weather changes in Europe".

Thousands of Britons evacuated from their homes on low-lying east coast areas on Thursday were warned of further woes on Friday in the form of "exceptionally high tides", the most serious tidal surge for more than 60 years.

In Germany, about 4 000 people in the northern state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern had no power on Friday, schools were closed and about 70 flights at Hamburg airport were cancelled.

Read more on:    poland  |  uk  |  scotland  |  floods
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