Power cuts, travel disruption and a '£300m' clean-up in the aftermath of Storm Eunice

ITV News reporter Chloe Keedy has the latest on the disruption left behind by the biggest UK storm in 30 years

Thousands of people remain without power and widespread disruption to travel services is continuing into Saturday in the aftermath of Storm Eunice.

A major clean-up operation, that could cost up to £300 million, is set to begin after the storm brought damage, destruction and record-breaking gusts of wind to the UK and Ireland, leading to the deaths of at least four people.

As of Saturday evening, 155,000 households were still without power across the UK, Energy Networks Association reported.

  • Northern Power said power had been restored to all customers as of 7pm on Saturday

  • Western Power said they were working to restore power to 60,000 homes

  • Electricity North West had restored power, except in the LA8 and LA23 postcodes

  • UK Power Networks said 13,000 properties were without power in the east of England and 27,500 in the south-east - 40,5000 in total

  • Scottish and Southern networks reported 59,600 homes are still without power

Millions of people were urged to stay at home on Friday due to safety fears over the impact of Eunice, one of the worst storms to hit the UK in a generation, while transport woes meant many were unable to travel.

Train networks were disrupted by flying debris, while there was damage to buildings and homes.

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) warned previous similar storms have cost around £360 million in repairs.

An ABI spokesperson said: “It is too early to estimate the likely insured cost of Storm Eunice, when insurers will be focusing on assessing damage, and helping their customers recover.

“No two storms are the same. The last significant storms to hit the UK – Ciara and Dennis – led to insurers paying out over £360 million.”

National Rail said “routes across most of Great Britain” remain affected on Saturday morning, with disruption set to continue throughout the day, as passengers were told to avoid travel where possible.

A roadside filled with debris from the rooftops of three houses which were torn off during storm Eunice, in north west London Credit: PA

National Rail said many operators were reporting “major damage” to the railway and obstructions on the line and urged passengers to check before travelling.

South Western Railway expects “significant disruption” across its network throughout the day, and said work was ongoing to clear the lines after more than 40 trees were felled on its routes.

Several Great Western Railway services have returned, with other operators able to run a partial service, but some long-distance routes are still facing suspension.

Routes on the Greater Anglia and Stansted Express network have also been suspended due to fallen trees.

The big clean-up could be hampered as five flood warnings, along with yellow wind and ice warnings are in place across parts of the country.

The Met Office has issued a less-severe yellow wind warning for much of the south coast of England and South Wales on Saturday, which it said “could hamper recovery efforts from Storm Eunice”.

Storm Eunice ripped through the UK, leaving four people dead and causing major disruption across the country - ITV News Correspondent Geraint Vincent reports on Friday night

Areas affected by the warning could experience more bridge closures, travel delays and further power cuts.

Icy stretches are also expected widely across Northern England, Northern Ireland and Scotland, with some snow in the regions.

A woman in her 30s died after a tree fell on a car in Haringey, north London, on Friday afternoon, the Metropolitan Police said. It was the first confirmed death in England related to Eunice.

A man in his 50s died in Netherton, Merseyside, after debris struck the windscreen of a vehicle he was travelling in.

Another man in his 20s was killed in Alton, Hampshire, after a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter pick-up collided with a tree in Old Odiham Road just before midday.

A man in Co Wexford, Ireland, was also killed by a falling tree.

A member of the public suffered “serious injuries” after being struck by debris from a roof in Henley-on-Thames.

A person clears snow in Tow Law, County Durham Credit: Joe Giddens/PA

Two men were also in hospital after being injured in similar, separate incidents in south London.

Winds of 122mph have been provisionally recorded at the Needles on the Isle of Wight, which, if verified, would be the highest ever recorded in England.

The previous record was 118mph at Gwennap Head in Cornwall in 1979.

Footage shared online captured planes struggling to land in high winds, damage to the roof of the O2 arena in London.

Emergency services look at the damage to the roof of the O2 Arena Credit: PA

In Somerset, the storm was captured toppling a village church spire.

Matt Hodson, who filmed the incident in Wells, told ITV News he captured the "surreal moment" amid "violent winds".

'Surreal' moment village church spire falls

Police forces and local authorities across the country reported being inundated with phone calls related to the storm, with East Sussex County Council receiving 97 fallen tree reports by 4pm.

On the transport network, several routes were closed.

Wind speeds forced both the M4 Prince of Wales Bridge and M48 Severn Bridge into Wales to close to traffic for what is believed to be the first time in history, while the Humber Bridge linking Yorkshire and Lincolnshire closed from 1.30pm.

The M4 Prince of Wales Bridge re-opened Friday afternoon, and the M48 Severn Bridge reopened on Saturday evening, but officials will continue to monitor the wind speeds through the night.

It was believed to be the first time both crossings had been closed at the same time due severe winds.

Meanwhile, National Highways has said the A36 has reopened in both directions between Wigley and Newton after Storm Eunice caused a tree to fall on the road and damage power cables.

The A6 in Buxton was also closed on Friday afternoon after a lorry blew over, causing minor injuries, but has since reopened.

Passengers are still being asked to avoid travelling where possible.