Storm Ciara is being called the storm of the century! The storm is battering Britain with wild weather. In fact, winds as high as 80 miles per hour are canceling flights, trains, and even sporting events.
Storm Ciara high winds closed Hyde Park, Regent’s Park, Richmond Park and five other royal parks. Meanwhile, in Ireland, a celebration marking Galway’s year as European Capital of Culture was canceled because of weather pummelling the Irish coast.
Some Good News for Air Travelers
The news isn’t all bad, though. For travelers, the high winds have provided one advantage: faster flights!
Flight Radar shared details on the fastest subsonic flight across the Atlantic. Strong tailwinds catapulted British Airways flight 112 from New York to London! It was the fastest subsonic crossing of the Atlantic with a record time of 4 hours and 56 minutes, shaving almost two hours off the normal flight time. But a Twitter user said BA212 from Boston to London flight beat that record.
The Telegraph reported that the Gulf Stream was traveling at 265 miles per hour, as fast as it has ever been, according to the Met Office. Record wind speeds included 86 miles per hour in Manchester and 93 miles per hour in Aberdaron, Wales!
Reduced Train Service
Dozen of rail companies have lowered speeds on trains. They are also offering a reduced service today with speed restrictions in place. Network Rail is restricting trains to 50mph across the majority of its lines. Grand Central has canceled all its services between London, Bradford and Sunderland today.
Canceled Transportation and Warnings
Storm Ciara high winds forced cancellations of ferry crossings with Caledonian MacBrayne. And travelers around the coastal areas were urged to take extra precautions because of heavy rain and winds.
Gatwick Express, Grand Central, Great Northern, Hull Trains, LNER, Northern, Southeastern, Southern, Thameslink and TransPennine Express all issued “do not travel warnings.”
The scale of the storm – with amber warnings across all of Wales and most of England – make it the most widespread for years, although it’s full toll will not be known until it begins to blow itself out from tonight.
The Telegraph reported that Helen Roberts, a senior meteorologist with the Met Office, said: “In terms of area, this is probably the biggest storm this century. I have not seen amber warnings on this scale, across all of Wales and much of England. The yellow wind warnings cover the whole of the UK.”
The storm could end up being the biggest since 1987!