Slideshow: ‘Weather Bomb’ hits Western Isles

Concerns were raised on Tuesday, December 9, as the safety of cars crossing the the Braighe Road was questioned.

The Gazette received several complaints that the road, which was receiving the impact of rising waves, was still open at high tide.

Weather warnings had been issued the day before with the expectation of a strong winter storm from the Atlantic, with national media declaring it a ‘weather bomb’.

The Met Office issued an amber warning for the Western Isles, and all schools were resultantly closed yesterday, Wednesday 10th, along with all nurseries, depots, libraries, museums, and sports and leisure facilities. All bin collection services for the Western Isles were also cancelled.

Stornoway Coastguard warned the sea state could become ‘phenomenal for a time’, the worst condition describable, leading to CalMac’s cancellation of all Minch crossings on the Tuesday and Wednesday. Sea swells were forecast of up to 40ft (12m).

After crossing the Braighe on Tuesday morning one complainant told the Gazette of the waves clearing the barriers, and flooding towards the Stornoway end in conditions that were ‘terrifying’.

Police closed the Braighe Road shortly after 9 o’clock. With high tide at 8:12, some people expressed their concerns that this was too late.

Comments were left on the Facebook page of the Western Isles Emergency Planning Coordinating Group, who said they will be reported to the Police Scotland Area Commander.

Stornoway Gazette Weather Correspondent, Eddy Graham, recorded Force 9 winds in Stornoway, gusting 72 mph at Stornoway Airport on Tuesday morning, and warned of a risk of snow tomorrow, Friday 12.