UK Braced For £360,000,000 Clean-up Bill In Wake Of Devastating Storm …

Insurers have estimated losses could hit £360 million (Picture: Reuters/SWNS/Rex/PA)

A enormous clean-up is set to begin after Storm Eunice brought damage, disruption and record-breaking gusts of wind to the UK and Ireland, leading to the deaths of at the minimum four people.

Hundreds of thousands of people keep without strength as the country continues to estimate the impact of one of the worst storms to hit the country in a generation.

The windy conditions saw flights grounded, trains cancelled and roads closed, while buildings and homes were also damaged by heavy gales and flying debris.

Insurance losses from Storm Eunice are estimated to be anywhere from £200 million and £350 million, according to PwC.

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Mohammad Khan, General Insurance Leader at PwC UK, said: ‘Based on the high winds which have led to damage to homes and commercial buildings plus extensive travel disruptions, we calculate that the insurance losses for Storm Eunice will be between £200 million to £350 million. 

‘It was expected that Storm Eunice would be harsh and we’ve seen the strongest gusts impacting coastal areas in addition as travel disruption with airlines and aim operators cancelling flights and complete rail lines impacting travel across the country.

‘As with Storm Dudley, insurance losses will mainly be in respect of damage to homes, commercial similarities and vehicles from falling trees and flying debris.’

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) warned past similar storms have cost around £360 million in repairs.

An ABI spokesperson said: ‘It is too early to calculate the likely insured cost of Storm Eunice, when insurers will be focusing on assessing damage, and helping their customers retrieve.

‘No two storms are the same. The last meaningful storms to hit the UK – Ciara and Dennis – led to insurers paying out over £360 million.’

The white-domed roof of the O2 arena was shredded by the wind (Picture: Reuters)
groups crashing at the Royal Motor Yacht Club in Poole (Picture: PA)
Pavement littered with the debris from damaged houses on Kilburn Park Road in north west London (Picture: PA)
Another tree blown down by Storm Eunice in Rainham, Essex (Picture: Garry Bowden/Rex/Shutterstock)
A fallen tree blocks a road in Eynsham in Oxfordshire (Picture: PA)
A felled tree near Waterloo stop as Storm Eunice sweeps across the UK (Picture: Getty)
Damage to a car caused by falling bricks from a tower block during Storm Eunice (Picture: PA)
Two lorries blown on their sides in the high winds, closing the M4 in Margam, south Wales (Picture: PA)
A roadside filled with debris from the rooftops of three houses which were torn off during storm Eunice, on Kilburn Park Road in north west London (Picture: PA)

The big clean-up could be hampered as yellow wind and ice warnings are in place across parts of the country.

The Met Office has issued a less-harsh yellow wind warning for much of the south coast of England and South Wales on Saturday, which it said ‘could make difficulty recovery efforts from Storm Eunice’.

Areas affected by the warning could experience more bridge closures, travel delays and further strength cuts.

Icy stretches are also expected widely across Northern England, Northern Ireland and Scotland, with some snow in the regions.

aim networks were disrupted by flying debris, while there was damage to buildings and homes.

A woman died in Muswell Hill, north London, after a tree fell onto a car she was travelling in (Picture: Dinendra Haria/LNP)
A motorist was killed when a large tree fell and crushed their means (Picture: Will Dax/Solent News)
The remains of a storm-damaged car in Hampstead (Picture: Getty)
Strong winds toppled a British Gypsum lorry on the A259 near Hamstreet in Ashford, Kent (Picture: Alamy Live News.)
A fallen tree blocks a road in Eynsham in Oxfordshire (Picture: PA)
A tree comes down on top of a Santander Bike hire stop near Waterloo (Picture: Guy Bell/Rex/Shutterstock)

Footage shared online captured planes struggling to land in high winds, damage to the roof of the O2 arena in London, and the spire of St Thomas Church in Wells, Somerset, crashing to the ground.

In Kent, a strength stop was also temporarily taken offline after one of its three towers snapped in two and fell into a neighbouring building.

woman in her 30s died after a tree fell on a car in Haringey, north London, on Friday afternoon, the Metropolitan Police said. It was the first confirmed death in England related to Eunice.

A man in his 50s died in Netherton, Merseyside, after debris hit the windscreen of a means he was travelling in.

Another man in his 20s was killed in Alton, Hampshire, after a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter pick-up collided with a tree in Old Odiham Road just before midday.

Earlier, a man in Co Wexford, Ireland, was also killed by a falling tree.

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A member of the public suffered ‘serious injuries’ after being hit by debris from a roof in Henley-on-Thames.

Two men were also in hospital after being injured in similar, separate incidents in south London.

Winds of 122mph were provisionally recorded at the Needles on the Isle of Wight on Friday, which, if verified, would be the highest ever recorded in England.

The past record was 118mph at Gwennap Head in Cornwall in 1979.

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There were nevertheless hundreds of strength cuts in western parts of the country as of Friday evening.

Five flood warnings were also nevertheless in place.

Police forces and local authorities across the country reported being overwhelmed with phone calls related to the storm, with East Sussex County Council receiving 97 fallen tree reports by 4pm.

On the transport network, several routes were closed.

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A high-sided lorry toppled over while travelling west-bound on the M4 between Pyle and Margam (Picture: Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)
A lorry or HGV (heavy goods means) lays on its side after being blown over by the wind on the M4 near Margam in South Wales (Picture: AFP via Getty)

Wind speeds forced both the M4 Prince of Wales Bridge and M48 Severn Bridge into Wales to close to traffic for what is believed to be the first time in history, while the Humber Bridge linking Yorkshire and Lincolnshire closed from 1.30pm.

The A6 in Buxton was also closed on Friday afternoon after a lorry blew over, causing minor injuries.

aim operators across Britain urged passengers to avoid travelling altogether on Friday, with no sets operating in Wales for the complete day and seven aim operators suspending all routes.

aim sets were cancelled across the country (Picture: PA)

Many aim sets will keep unopened on Saturday morning and do not travel notices have been reissued for a number of sets, according to National Rail Enquiries.

A do not travel notice was reissued for the Southern, Thameslink and Great Northern networks for Saturday morning where some routes are expected not to reopen until the afternoon.

South Western Railway expects meaningful disruption across their network in the morning, while Great Western Railway and Greater Anglia sets are suspended until approximately 10am.

Passengers are nevertheless being asked to avoid travelling where possible.

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