Storm Ciaran live updates: Weather warnings remain amid threat of flooding

Weather warnings are still in place after Ciaran caused damage, shut schools and caused widespread travel disruption.

The Met Office and Environment Agency have issued warnings for Friday and Saturday as the impact of Storm Ciaran continues to be felt.
The Met Office and Environment Agency have issued warnings for Friday and Saturday as the impact of Storm Ciaran continues to be felt.

Storm Ciaran has largely eased but more yellow weather warnings will continue to affect the UK this weekend.

The Met Office said the storm had now moved into the North Sea, but parts of Scotland and southern England would continue to see heavy rain on Friday and Saturday.

It comes after Storm Ciaran battered the south coast and the Channel Islands with heavy rain and gusts of up to 100mph on Thursday, leaving nearly 150,000 homes without power.

A yellow rain warning will be in place from 5am to midnight on Saturday across all of southern England, including Cornwall, Kent and the Isle of Wight.


Live coverage is over
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    People walk on a flooded street in the aftermath of Storm Ciaran, in Campi Bisenzio, in Tuscany region. (Reuters)

    Five killed as floods hit Italy

    It's not just the UK where Ciaran has hit, with parts of Europe badly affected, too.

    Five people were killed after rivers burst their banks following torrential rain in the central Italian region of Tuscany, local authorities said on Friday.

    There had been fears that the River Arno could flood the historic city of Florence after nearby towns were swamped, but Tuscan regional president Eugenio Giani said the high water point had passed in mid-morning without major incident.

    The Italian government declared a state of emergency and allocated an initial 5 million euros ($5.4 million) to help the worst-hit areas.

    Ciaran was driven by a powerful jet stream that swept in from the Atlantic, unleashing heavy rain and furious winds that have already caused heavy flooding in Northern Ireland, parts of Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands and France.

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What is a 'weather bomb'?

One of the characteristics of Storm Ciaran is that the central pressure inside an area of low pressure is falling at a very rapid rate. The Met Office says: "A 'weather bomb' is an unofficial term for a low pressure system whose central pressure falls 24 millibars in 24 hours in a process known as explosive cyclogenesis.

"Rapid acceleration of air caused by the jet stream high up in the atmosphere can remove air from the column, reducing its weight so causing pressure to fall at sea level.

"This in turn sucks in air which converges from surrounding regions resulting in faster and faster rotation of the circulation. The resulting winds peak over a period of a few hours and can be strong enough to bring down trees and cause structural damage."

Watch: Storm Ciaran lashes southern England with strong winds