How Storm Eunice caused chaos across Norfolk and Waveney
- Credit: Gary Bland
Storm Eunice has passed through the region but warnings remain in place for strong winds.
Trees were down, trains were suspended and businesses closed across Norfolk and Waveney.
The Met Office amber weather warning of "danger to life" was in place until 9pm.
Here is how the day unfolded in Norfolk and Waveney.
Winds reached up to 80mph
In Weybourne and Tibenham Airfield gusts of 74mph were officially recorded but they could have reached as high as 80mph in other places.
The strongest winds hit the region at 2pm and lasted until 4pm.
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Dan Holley, a meteorologist in Norfolk, revealed unofficial reports of gusts up to 77mph at Southwold Lifeboat Station and other locations in Norfolk saw winds in excess of 80mph.
Fred Best, from Weatherquest, said although the eye of the storm had passed, gusts could remain at around 50mph to 60mph.
"Conditions are easing but still take care," he said. "It will still be very windy even though we have passed the peak."
Across the border in Suffolk a red weather warning was in place and a major incident was declared earlier today.
Norfolk police urged people to only make a journey "if necessary" and advised "if you must leave the house, watch out for any debris".
A Norfolk Police spokesman said: “We have had a very busy day in the Norfolk control room but planned ahead to ensure extra resources were in place, in order to deal with the anticipated increased demand for service.
"As the storm continues, we would continue to encourage people to stay safe and our advice remains that people should not travel unless absolutely necessary.”
Traffic and travel has been disrupted
As the severity of winds increased, Greater Anglia suspended all services.
This was so Network Rail staff could remove trees and repair the infrastructure.
On Greater Anglia's website it states: “There are trees on the line in various locations across Greater Anglia need to be cut back and removed.
“Trees on the overhead electric lines need to be removed and fires put out, and damaged infrastructure repaired.”
The impact of the storm could cause disruption into the weekend depending on how quickly repairs can be completed.
Konectbus also suspended services in Norwich during the storm's peak earlier.
But it has now announced that services will begin to return to normal.
Tower Road, in Lowestoft, was closed for safety reasons after the large sign at the entrance of Gateway Retail Park was destroyed by winds.
Officers urged people to avoid the area and find alternative routes.
A large fallen tree blocked Low Road in Keswick, near Cringleford.
Police attended while tree surgeons cleared the tree from the road.
The road reopened just before 4.45pm on Friday (February 18).
Drivers were also asked to avoid the B1113 Mulbarton Road in Bracon Ash due to a fallen tree.
Work was underway throughout the afternoon to remove it from the road.
Both Taverham Lane and Costessey Lane are closed and various services, local community members and emergency services are on scene to help clear blockages caused by fallen trees.
In Fleggburgh, a tree had fallen across the A1064 Main Road at about 6pm and brought power lines down with it.
Homes without power
Thousands of homes were left without power across Norfolk.
UK Power Networks reported outages in Diss, Hapton, Attleborough, Aylsham, Stalham, Swaffham, Horsford, King's Lynn, Dereham, Alpington, Watton, Tottenhill, Cawston, Hemsby, Great Yarmouth - totalling about 14,300 outages.
The estimated time for the power to be restored was originally between 5pm and 6pm, however, UK Power Networks advised it could be up until 11.30pm on Friday in some areas.
UK Power Networks' website read that it is "investigating a high voltage overhead electricity line fault which has caused a power cut in the local area".
Businesses forced to close
Center Parcs' holiday resort in Elveden closed due to the strong winds from Storm Eunice.
The estate, near Thetford Forest in north Suffolk, will not welcome new guests set to arrive on Friday, the firm revealed on Twitter.
And eat it, the cake and bakery stall on Norwich Market, is among the the county's businesses which did not open today.
On its Instagram page, owner Tori Fama, wrote: “Sorry guys it’s just too risky today. We’ve baked like crazy all week due to us being so busy so we’re disappointed too - but it’s better to be safe than sorry.”
An area outside a Great Yarmouth shopping centre was sealed off as a precaution as the strong winds hit the coast.
The area to the right of the Market Place entrance of Market Gates Shopping Centre had also been cordoned off.
Fencing at the lion enclosure at Africa Alive! was also destroyed by Storm Eunice.
The damage forced the zoo to close until Monday (February 21) at the earliest while the damage can be repaired.
Fortunately the lions were moved prior to the storm taking place.
PACT Animal Sanctuary in Woodrising, near Hingham, issued an urgent appeal to help find 10 missing cockatiels after its aviary was damaged in Storm Eunice.
It posted on its Facebook page at 2.30pm that the cockatiel aviary had "lifted off the ground and gone backwards", with all the birds escaping.