Winter storm lashes British Isles, heads for Germany

A strong winter storm is dumping heavy rains on the British Isles as it makes its way across northern Europe on Sunday.

In Scotland, three people were injured as a pub roof collapsed due to the storm, news agency PA reported. Ciara was expected to be the strongest storm to hit the country since 2013, with gusts of up to 130 kilometres per hour.

The Met Office warned of flooding to buildings and roads, as well as danger from flying debris as well as strong waves in coastal areas. Several ferry services have been cancelled.

Germany’s weather service said the storm – which is called Sabine there – would reach the north and central parts of the country during Sunday, and southern Germany early on Monday morning.

Deutsche Bahn, the country’s rail company, said it prepared for fallen trees and damaged contact wires causing interruptions in train travel. Airports in the cities of Frankfurt and Berlin also expected the storm affecting some of their operations.

Ciara is expected to hit Belgium at 10 am (0900 GMT) on Sunday and affect the whole country for about 24 hours, the Royal Meteorological Institute said. Wind gusts are expected to reach speeds of up to 130 kilometres per hour.

The Dutch weather service urged drivers to leave their caravans at home, and the country’s football association cancelled all games in its professional leagues for Sunday. As a precaution KLM cancelled dozens of European flights from and to Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport.

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