Preston weather warning upgraded as Storm Eleanor looms

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The Met Office said strong winds are expected until 7pm today, though they won't be quite as strong as the 65mph gusts recorded in the early hours of yesterday.

In Austria, about 20 skiers in the Alpine town of Kitzbühel were rescued after strong winds dislodged a cable vehicle.

More than 60 flood warnings are in place in England, alone.

It had issued a red weather warning overnight with wind speeds reaching 80 miles per hour (129 km/h).

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A harbour wall collapsed in Cornwall taking down hundreds of tonnes of masonry while winds of up to 127 kph lashed Wales leaving hundreds of homes without power and hitting transport links.

A yellow warning will be in place until 6pm today (January 3) for England and Wales as well as the majority of Northern Ireland and some parts of the south of Scotland.

A spokesperson said: Storm Eleanor will ease but strong winds, large waves and a higher than average tide will continue.

Junior Minister and Galway West T.D, Seán Kyne says the Defence Forces have been deployed since last night and are working with council staff to tackle flooding.

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The Environmental Agency's duty manager, Carol Halt, said: "We urge people to stay safe on the coast - take extreme care on coastal paths and promenades, and don't put yourself in unnecessary danger trying to take "storm selfies". "Power cuts and disruption to other services (mobile phones for example) may also occur, while injuries from flying debris are possible".

A woman who went into labour as Storm Eleanor smashed into the United Kingdom was flown 60 miles by rescue helicopter to a specialist neonatal unit in gale force winds.

The winter weather, along with low wind chills, could cause widespread power outages and ice over roadways, making commuting treacherous for millions of Americans from northern Florida to southern Virginia, the National Weather Service said in a series of warnings.

Forecasters have also said temperatures are set to plummet over the weekend thanks to a cold snap.

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Storm Eleanor, which swept across the country overnight carrying heavy rain and winds of up to 100mph, has left thousands of homes without power and caused substantial damage to property.

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