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Strong winds batter East Lancashire
10:30am Thursday 5th December 2013 in News
STRONG winds have hit East Lancashire amid warnings of further severe gales to come.
Forecasters have issued an ‘amber’, ‘be prepared’ warning with wind gusts in excess of 80mph expected.
Speed restictions of 50mph were imposed on part of the M6 in Lancashire this morning.
Steve Willington, the Met Offce’s chief forecaster, said: “A rapidly deepening Atlantic depression was forecast to move east to the north of Scotland during last night and this morning.
“This will bring westerly gales to northern and some central parts of the UK, which will veer northerly and temporarily bring much colder arctic air southwards across northern areas before easing into Friday."
The 50mph speed limit is in place along the M6 in Lancashire, both ways between the M55 at junction 32 and junction 27 for Standish.
Road users are being advised to check the weather forecast and road conditions before they travel.
The Highways Agency has issued a severe weather alert for high-sided vehicles, caravans, motorbikes and other vulnerable road users, which are advised to take extra care when travelling.
A lorry has overturned on the M66. The motorway has been closed between junction J1 and the A56 as motorway police clear the vehicle.
Drivers are reporting long tailbacks.
Network Rail has also set speed restrictions due to the strong winds and rail delays are expected.
The winds are believed to have caused a building to partially collapse in Burnley.
Firefighters were called to Pritchard Street at around noon today to help make the site safe.
Burnley Council’s building control team were on site.
Elsewhere, 560 properties in Langho have lost power this afternoon.
A spokeswoman for Electricity North West said the power had failed at around noon due to a fault with the overhead lines.
Engineers are on site and working to fix the issue.
Residents in Whalley are also experiencing problems, although it is not yet certain how many homes have been left without electricity.
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