13 dead as Storm Kyrill batters Britain

90mph storm Kyrill's a killer

Tragic ... wall collapsed on boy as he walked with his grandmother and right, truck
in which female driver died lays in canal after flyover fall after the worst storm to hit Britain in 17 years left a trail of devastation


January 19, 2007

A BOY of two was among 13 people killed yesterday as Britain was battered by vicious storm Kyrill.

The North Atlantic tempest — named by the European weather agency — whipped up terrifying gusts, some reaching 99mph.

One tore down a 6ft wall as Saurav Ghai toddled hand-in-hand with his gran. They had just stepped off a bus in KENTISH TOWN, London.

Resident Matthew McCoy, 22, said: “Passers-by were trying to move the child from the rubble.”

A relative of Saurav said: “He was a beautiful boy — he was smiling from the day he was born.”

Forecasters predicted the storms would calm down today, but warned it would remain windy, with gusts of up to 40mph and colder temperatures on the way.

Morning commuters faced continuing problems on the transport network during the clear-up operation.

The latest victim to be reported was a 58-year-old man who was travelling to his home in Essex when he stopped off at the Sainsbury’s supermarket petrol station in Bamber Bridge, near PRESTON, Lancashire.

He was putting petrol in his car when a gust of wind took the heavy metal canopy off its pillars and it crashed to the ground.

The canopy hit the victim, who was taken to the Royal Preston Hospital suffering a serious arm injury, Lancashire Police said.

A spokesman said: “Unfortunately, his condition deteriorated in the early evening, and he subsequently died.”

There was more tragedy in STOCKPORT, Greater Manchester, when a woman in her 60s was crushed to death by a falling wall, and a man died after being blown into a metal shutter at an industrial estate in the Strangeways area of MANCHESTER, Lancashire.

Airport boss Richard Heard, 49, died near his home in BRIDGNORTH, Shropshire, when a 10ft branch smashed through the windscreen of his BMW X5 as he drove to Birmingham International.

Wife Kay, 50, said she and the couple’s daughters aged 15 and 18 were “devastated”. She said: “He was a wonderful husband and father and friend who will be missed by so many.”

A male passenger in a Ford Fiesta died when a tree fell on the car in STREATLEY, Berkshire. And a man died in CREWE, Cheshire when he was hit by a tree.

Crushed ... uprooted tree lands on Mercedes in West London street and inset, a car wrecked in Eastbourne

A female trucker was killed when her lorry overturned on the SKIPTON western bypass in North Yorks, plunging from a flyover and landing upside down in the Leeds-Liverpool canal.

The driver was today named as 49-year-old Christine Doran, of Moston, Manchester, Lancashire.

A man died when a lorry was blown over on to his car on the A55 on the outskirts of CHESTER, Cheshire.

One man died and another was seriously injured when their car was hit by a fire engine heading to LIVERPOOL, Merseyside John Lennon Airport where an easyJet plane was about to make an emergency landing.

A man in his 80s died of a suspected heart attack as he tried to secure loose fencing at Prenton, on THE WIRRAL. And an elderly man was killed when a shed roof was blown on to him in KEADBY, Humberside.

Winds hit 80mph in several places, with gusts of 99mph recorded at The Needles off the Isle of Wight.

The storm was the most powerful to hit England since the Burns’ Night storm of January 25, 1990, when winds gusted to 104mph. German forecasters who use an alphabetical naming system like America dubbed it Kyrill — meaning Cyril.

Other victims included a woman left fighting for life last night after being hit by a falling tree in HEDNESFORD, Staffordshire.

And three children there were hurt — two seriously — when tiles and a metal flue from their school roof was blown on to them outside Blake Valley Technical College.

In PARTINGTON, Greater Manchester, hundreds of children were evacuated from their two-storey school when the roof was blown off and a gable wall collapsed

Horror ... branch crashed through BMW's windscreen killing Mr Heard, inset

Rob Beesley, whose ten-year-old daughter and five-year-old son are pupils, said: “You could actually see into the classrooms.”

A man was critically ill in EASTBOURNE, East Sussex, after a roof tile hit his head. And in BOURNEMOUTH, Dorset, a lad of 18 cheated death when masonry from the crumbling roof of a four-storey building fell inches from him.

A lorry and car crashed on a viaduct on the A10 between HERTFORD and WARE. An injured driver had to crawl to safety as 999 crews were in danger of being blown off the 100ft structure.

A 28-year-old man was seriously injured at HEATHROW when a fence collapsed on him at a hotel near Terminal Five. A boy of 11 was taken to hospital after being struck by a flying fence panel in KNAPHILL, Surrey. Across the country trees collapsed on to cars, including a parked Mercedes in CHISWICK, West London.

Around 25,000 homes were blacked out between OXFORD and CHICHESTER when power cables were brought down. About 30,000 homes had been hit in CHESHIRE and mid and north Wales. Snow fell in parts of SCOTLAND while wintry showers and ice hit YORKSHIRE and CO DURHAM.

Batten down ... roof blows off in Surrey, top, while
a dog wraps up to fight the wind in Leyton, London

Chaos ... London Bridge station is closed, top, while a walker
is hit by massive wave as Dover port is closed by winds

Extreme weather ... pictures from Poole, Dorset main picture,
Lord's cricket ground (London) roof blown off, top, and Co Durham

List of some of Britain's worst natural disasters
  • 1348 (external - login to view) Black Death (external - login to view)
  • 1485 (external - login to view) Sweating sickness (external - login to view)epidemic (external - login to view)
  • 1507 (external - login to view) Sweating sickness epidemic
  • 1517 (external - login to view) Sweating sickness epidemic
  • 1528 (external - login to view) Sweating sickness epidemic
  • 1551 (external - login to view) Sweating sickness epidemic
  • 1606 (external - login to view) Bristol Channel floods (external - login to view), 20 January (external - login to view)1606 (external - login to view) (possible tsunami (external - login to view))
  • 1607 (external - login to view) Lynmouth (external - login to view) flooding, Devon (external - login to view)
  • 1638 (external - login to view) The Great Thunderstorm (external - login to view), Widecombe-in-the-Moor (external - login to view), Devon
  • 1665 (external - login to view) Great Plague of London (external - login to view)
  • 1703 (external - login to view) The Great Storm of 1703 (external - login to view)
  • 1796 (external - login to view) Lynmouth (external - login to view) flooding, Devon
  • 1832 (external - login to view) Cholera Epidemic (external - login to view)
  • 1836 (external - login to view) Avalanche (external - login to view) in Lewes (external - login to view), the only major avalanche recorded in England (external - login to view).
  • 1846 (external - login to view)1849 (external - login to view) Potato famine (external - login to view), Ireland (external - login to view)
  • 1881 (external - login to view) Eyemouth Disaster (external - login to view), storm, Scotland (external - login to view)
  • 1884 (external - login to view) Colchester earthquake (external - login to view), Essex (external - login to view)
  • 1918 (external - login to view)1919 (external - login to view) Flu epidemic (external - login to view)
  • 1931 (external - login to view)1931 Dogger Bank earthquake (external - login to view)
  • 1952 (external - login to view) Lynmouth (external - login to view) flooding, Devon
  • 1953 (external - login to view) North Sea Flood of 1953 (external - login to view), England
  • 1987 (external - login to view) The Great Storm of 1987 (external - login to view)
  • 1990 (external - login to view) The Burns' Day storm (external - login to view)
  • 2000 (external - login to view) Severe flooding in many parts of the UK. Among the worst hits are York (external - login to view), Shrewsbury (external - login to view), Lewes (external - login to view) and Uckfield (external - login to view)
  • 2004 (external - login to view) Boscastle flooding (external - login to view), Cornwall (external - login to view)
  • 2005 (external - login to view) Carlisle (external - login to view) flood
  • 2007 (external - login to view) European Windstorm Kyrill (external - login to view)
the moral of the story is, when the wind gets this high, stay indoors or something might fall on you
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