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- Region under red weather warning from Met Office
- Council crews dealing with fallen trees and roof tiles
- School roof damaged
- Merseyside Police issue warning
- Winds could reach 70mph to 100mph
- Power lines down in some areas
This image of a trampoline that had blownon to a van in Parr was posted on our Facebook page. It's been viewed by more than 8,000 people.
Our story from earlier: Reports that Langtree Park has suffered structural damage in high winds are wide of the mark, say Saints.
A sponsor's sign blew off the front of the stadium and on to the car park earlier this evening, meaning safety checks had to be carried out and Peasley Cross Lane was temporarily closed.
But club officials say there is no significant damage.
@mel_king: @sthelensstar:Penny Lane closed both ways between the Southward Road junction&the A49 Lodge Lane junction in Haydock,because of fallen tree
St Helens Council confirms there was a road closure at Peasley Cross Lane. But reports Langtree Park has been damaged are wide of the mark, say Saints. A sign blew off the front of the stadium, meaning checks had to take place.
Latest from the Highways Agency: Drivers in Greater Manchester and Cheshire are being advised to avoid key sections of the local motorway network this evening after incidents during today's storms.
The M60 Barton Bridge between junctions 10 and 11 of the motorway is now closed in both clockwise and anti-clockwise directions following a collision between a lorry and a car at around 6pm on the anti-clockwise carriageway. There were no serious injuries in the incident and drivers stuck in traffic behind it are being released from the scene.
Drivers are now being advised to avoid this section of the M60 which had formed part of the diversion route for the ongoing closure of the M6 at Thelwall Viaduct.
Drivers currently on the M60 around Barton Bridge are having to leave the motorway and find alternative routes back on avoiding the bridge - resulting in severe congestion in the area. Drivers using the diversion from Thelwall Viaduct are now being advised to take the M60 route around east Manchester instead which is longer but avoids Barton Bridge and allows use of the M61 between the M60 and M6 south of Preston.
However, drivers using the M60 around east Manchester are advised that there is some congestion around junction 24 at Denton Island where an overturned lorry is blocking one lane in each direction around the central reservation.
Drivers of high sided vehicles are also urged to avoid using the eastbound M62 out of Manchester towards Leeds with high winds of up to 74mph experienced at Rakewood Viaduct between junctions 21 and 22 and a lorry overturning on the westbound M62 in West Yorkshire earlier this evening - albeit with two lanes of the carriageway still open. To minimise the risk of being blown over lorries are being urged to leave the M62 before junction 20 and park up and wait for the high winds to subside.
Drivers are urged to check travel conditions before setting out on journeys and consider whether they really need to travel with gale force winds forecast to continue beyond this evening's peak travel period and up to midnight this evening.
6:40pm Wed 12 Feb 14
barrie timpson says
Stay safe people.
RT @bbcmerseyside: @SPEnergyNetwork have been dealing with reports of power cuts in parts of #Chester, L9, L11 in #Liverpool and #StHelens …— @Tony_The_Red 12 February 2014
#sthelens roof of knackered old Hattons building on corner of Croppers Hill and Borough Road looks like it wont take a night of battering— @mikeashworth 12 February 2014
POLICE have urged people to be cautious and not make unnecessary journeys following Met Office forecasts for high winds tonight.
A red weather warning has been issued amid fears gales of up to 100mph could batter parts of the North West.
Winds are predicted to increase from late afternoon last until 10pm, with a potential for disruption on highways and near to coastal areas.
Merseyside Police has been working with partner agencies - including St Helens Council -- to ensure public safety and minimise disruption for the communities.
A force spokeswoman said: "The force would like to reassure the public that together with partner agencies, there are tried and tested contingency plans in place for extreme weather conditions.
"Those plans have been implemented today and partner agencies will respond appropriately to all emergency calls and ensure recovery plans are in place to return to a state of normality as soon as possible."
The public are asked to exercise caution during periods of severe weather and avoid unnecessary journeys.
Officers are also reminding residents to avoid coastal areas during the high winds.
Council warns of severe weather later today Earlier, St Helens Council echoed warnings from the Met Office that indicate the borough, along with other parts of the North West, could be hit by winds of between 70 and 100 mph.
A statement read: "Winds of this strength have the power to cause structural damage to buildings, bring down trees, affect power supplies and disrupt transport and travel arrangements.
"The forecast has prompted the Met Office to issue its first ‘Red warning’ of the winter – meaning there is a ‘risk to life’ and that people should ‘avoid dangerous areas.’
"Members of the public are being advised to take extra care and, wherever possible, to alter their travel arrangements during this spell of storm force winds."
Engineers from United Utilities have been called out after power and telephone lines were brought down in Rainhill and Nutgrove during the storms said a council spokesperson.
Drivers in Cheshire are being advised that the M6 is totally closed in both directions between junction 19 at Knutsford and junction 21a at Croft Interchange.
This is due to continuing gale force winds with cross winds along Thelwall Viaduct as a forecast storm arrives in the North West. Wind gauges along the two bridges have registered speeds of between 64mph and 74mph since 3.30pm this afternoon with the story set to last possibly until midnight before winds start to slowly subside according to Met Office forecasters.
Drivers using the M6 are being advised that a strategic diversion is in place between junction 19 and junction 21a - with northbound drivers leaving the M6 at junction 19 at Knutsford and rejoining the M6 at Croft Interchange via the northbound A556, M56 (eastbound), clockwise M60 and westbound M62. Southbound drivers will be directed to use the same diversion in reverse.
Officers from Cheshire Police, Highways Agency traffic officers and Highways Agency contractors operated a managed closure of the motorway so that no drivers were trapped on the carriageway before it was closed between the two junctions.
The carriageways closed at around 4.30pm and will not re-open again until wind speeds drop.
Damage to St John Vianney's primary school roof - council teams are assessing damage
Eccleston Court Nursing Home - entrance blocked by fallen trees - crews are clearing.
Several chimneys are now down in Vincent Street in St Helens.
Council teams are out clearing debris. No injuries have been reported.
Tree gangs from St Helens Council are dealing with a number of falling trees at:
Garswood Recreation Ground
Parkside Road Newton
Burrows Lane - diversions are in place until the trees are dealt with.