An amber weather warning for strong winds has been issued for the Isle of Wight, with structural damage to buildings and significant travel disruption expected.
Islanders are being warned that a spell of very strong winds will develop on Saturday night and continue throughout Sunday and into the early hours of Monday, bringing gusts of 60-70mph across the Island with 70-80mph expected in more exposed hilly or coastal areas. Some areas may well see winds in excess of 80mph.
Forecasters at IW Met Service say that there is the risk of falling tree debris alongside the risk of structural damage to properties and buildings.
Current projections show the peak of the wind to be between 06:00 and 16:00 on Sunday. There will also be rainfall throughout the day, adding to the adverse weather conditions.
On the sea, swell peaks in excess of 8 metres are expected at times which means the Island’s coastline will be battered by extremely large waves. It seems likely that a small to moderate storm surge will also develop of around 0.5 meters and this, combined with moderately high spring tides, may lead to some minor flooding along Solent coasts as well as significantly over-topping waves along the West and South coasts of the Island.
The East coast will also see some large waves but somewhat smaller in height leading to less of an impact, although still potentially giving some rather dangerous walking conditions along promenades, particularly between Shanklin and Sandown.
The amber warning is in force from 22:00 on Saturday until 06:00 on Monday.
Before the storm
• Secure loose objects such as wheelie bins, garden furniture or anything else that could be blown into windows and other glazing and break them
• Close and securely fasten doors and windows, particularly those on the windward side of the house, and especially large doors such as those on garages
• Park vehicles in a garage, if available; otherwise keep them clear of buildings, trees, walls and fences
• Be aware of potential hazards nearby
During the storm
• Stay indoors as much as possible
• If you do go out, try not to walk or shelter close to buildings and trees
• Keep away from the sheltered side of boundary walls and fences – if these structures fail, they will collapse on this side
• Do not go outside to repair damage while the storm is in progress
• If possible, enter and leave your house through doors in the sheltered side, closing them behind you
• Open internal doors only as needed, and close them behind you
• Take care when driving on exposed routes such as bridges, or high open roads, delay your journey or find alternative routes if possible
• Slow down and be aware of side winds, particular care should be taken if you are towing or are a high sided vehicle
• Do not drive unless your journey is really necessary
Island Echo will be bringing you live updates throughout Sunday with all the latest traffic and travel information, emerging stories and all the latest from weather forecasters.