Strong winds hit county

STRONG winds hit across Suffolk today with blasts thought to be getting up to 60mph near to the coast.Felixstowe docks were closed this morning due to the extreme weather and said it would probably be closed for most of the day.

SUFFOLK was battening down the hatches today as winds gusting up to gale force swept across the county - with the weathermen warning of worse to come.

At least two schools were closed after power lines came down, and blasts of up to 60mph were expected as police urged drivers to take care on the roads with the risk of falling trees in the high winds.

Felixstowe port was closed because of the gusty conditions and was expected to be shut for most of the day.

More than 4,000 lorries use the container terminal daily and truckers were urged to delay their visits and park up and wait for the port to re-open to avoid congestion.

Operation Stack was up and running on the A14 Port of Felixstowe Road with one lane coned off to create a waiting area for the juggernauts, with speed restrictions in place for all drivers. Signs were in place along the dual carriageway to warn people in advance.

Trees had fallen down on the A134 at Barnham, at 4.42am, and in Ractory Road, Great Waldringfield, at 8.45am. They were cut up and removed by police.

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And in Stoke Ash high winds caused a power cable to come down leaving the village primary school without power, causing it to close, while Wetheringsett Primary School was also closed due to loss of power.

Coastguards are broadcasting warnings of gale force nine winds and storm force ten winds.

With the wind coming from the south-west it was quite pleasant for walking along the sheltered seafront at Felixstowe, but it was difficult for sailors on the open sea off the coast.

High tide today is around 4.30pm and tides this week have been higher than predicted.

In Norfolk, flood warnings were in place on a number of rivers.

Evening Star weatherman Ken Blowers said: “It is all caused by very deep depression to the north of the UK.

“That is going to generate south westerly winds increasing to 50mph.

“Closer to the coast it will get up to 60mph or just over.

“This evening the winds will slowly decrease and temperatures will rise to 54F (12C). This temperature is more typical of early April.

“The outlook for Saturday is more rain.”

Police said the wind had not caused any roads across the region to close as yet but they were monitoring them as well as the Orwell Bridge to see if action needed to be taken.

Tony Woodward, control room supervisor at Ipswich police station, said: “We would advise motorists to take care when out driving at the moment.

“They should adjust their driving for the conditions and look out for standing water on the roads.”

Have you seen any damage could by the high winds? Contact the Evening Star Newsdesk on 01473 324788.