Enormous waves race across Atlantic, UK braces for storm

Waves crash over Blackpool waterfront in England, Monday, Feb. 10, 2020. Storm Ciara battered the U.K. and northern Europe with hurricane-force winds and heavy rains Sunday, halting flights and trains and producing heaving seas that closed down ports. Propelled by the fierce winds, a British Airways plane was thought to have made the fastest New York-to-London flight by a conventional airliner.

Enormous waves churned across the North Atlantic on Saturday as Britain braces for a second straight weekend of wild winter weather and flooding that’s already seen the army deployed to help out residents in northern England.

Hurricane-force winds up to 80 knots (92 mph) and monster waves that could reach over 100 feet (30 meters) high were roaring across North Atlantic, the U.S. National Weather Service’s Ocean Prediction Center reported early Saturday.

Heavy rain and strong winds are expected to hit Britain around lunchtime, mainly in the northern parts of England and southern Scotland, but all parts of the country could be affected. The fourth storm of the winter season, dubbed Dennis, is already causing widespread travel disruptions. Airlines have pre-emptively canceled hundreds of flights out of London and other U.K. airports and train lines have warned about possible delays and cancellations.

Areas in northern England, which are still recovering from last week’s storm, face up to 4 1/2 inches (120 centimeters) of rain. The country’s Environment Agency said flooding is likely to be worse than during last weekend’s Storm Ciara since the rain will be falling on already saturated ground.

Britain’s Met Office has issued a number of weather warnings covering most of the country.

Easyjet has already cancelled around 230 flights in and out of the country as wind speeds are set to hit 70 mph (113 kph). British Airways has also cancelled flights.

British army personnel are set to provide support for stretched communities in the flood-hit Calder Valley region in West Yorkshire.

“This extra and expert resource couldn’t be more welcome to support already exhausted communities and help us respond to further weather warnings across Calderdale,” said local council leader Tim Swift.

Storm Ciara killed eight people across Europe, two of them in the U.K.

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