close
Connect with us

News

Storm Christoph: Thousands of homes evacuated amid ‘danger to life’ flood warnings

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/uk-weather-storm-christoph-manchester-evacuated-b900530.html

Storm Christoph: Thousands of homes evacuated amid ‘danger to life’ flood warnings
T

housands of homes were evacuated overnight as Storm Christoph caused widespread flooding across the UK.

Some 2,000 properties in the East Didsbury, West Didsbury and Northenden areas of Greater Manchester were due to be evacuated on Wednesday night because of rising water levels, the city council said.

People were also asked to leave their homes in parts of Ruthin and Bangor on Dee in North Wales, and Maghull in Merseyside.

It comes as heavy rain and snow continued to fall across England and Wales, with many rivers at “dangerously high levels”, the Environment Agency said.

Four “severe” flood warnings, meaning there is a danger to life, were issued by the agency for the River Mersey at Didsbury and Northenden, and in Maghull.

Amber and yellow weather warnings are in force until Thursday for Storm Christoph, which is also threatening to bring up to 30cm of snow to northern areas.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson earlier urged people to heed the flood warnings and evacuate their properties when told to do so.

Greater Manchester Police assistant chief constable Nick Bailey said a flood basin in Didsbury, which takes water from the River Mersey, was full and will “over-top in the next few hours”.

“As a result, we will be issuing a flood warning to homes,” he said.

<p>Flooding in Northwich, Cheshire</p>
(

Flooding in Northwich, Cheshire

/ PA )

“This will be through texted flood alerts to some people and police officers, PCSOs, firefighters, and volunteers will be knocking on doors.

“We have identified about 160 people that will be moved. There will be provision at Wythenshawe Forum and hotels are being used.

“Some of those that are being evacuated will also be Covid-positive or isolating at home.”

Mr Bailey said up to 3,000 properties in Greater Manchester could be affected by flooding, with a peak expected at 11pm on Wednesday.

(

Snow falls in East Didsbury, Manchester, where homes are being evacuated due to risk of flooding

/ PA )

Two “severe” flood warnings, meaning there is a danger to life, have been issued by the Environment Agency for the River Mersey at East and West Didsbury, and Northenden.

North Wales Police said its officers were helping the fire service to evacuate homes in Ruthin, and urged people to avoid the area.

The force tweeted: “Officers have been called to assist @DenbighshireCC and @NWFRS in #Ruthin, where some homes are being evacuated.

“Regrettably, people who do not live locally are driving to the area to ‘see the floods’. Please do not stretch our resources by adding to the problem.”

Downing Street has said Covid-secure facilities will be available for any people forced to evacuate as a result of the weather.

Mr Johnson said steps were being taken to ensure the transport and energy networks were prepared so that electricity outages would not be “severe” and that there were sufficient supplies of sandbags.

He told reporters: “There are some times where I have been to scenes where, alas, people have decided not to obey the advice and not evacuated.

“It is their right not to do so if they choose – it’s always people’s right to stay wherever they are.

“But it really is advisable – follow the advice. If you are told to leave your home then you should do so.”

(

Vehicles navigate the flooded Mountsorrel Lane in Leicestershire

/ PA )

Met Office forecaster Grahame Madge described Storm Christoph as “quite a slow-moving system” which is bringing “a variety of weather” to the UK.

The meteorologist said: “While rain remains the main hazard in the south, further north we’ve got snow and ice remaining a risk.

“The system will work its way through, we are expecting significant totals of rainfall and when you combine that with snowmelt it can lead to localised flooding across the affected regions.”

There is a risk of further snow later in the week as Storm Christoph makes its way east, with accumulations expected in Scotland, northern England and parts of Northern Ireland, Mr Madge added.

Public Health England (PHE) has issued a cold weather alert for the North East, North West, and Yorkshire and the Humber from 9am on Thursday to January 25.

Dr Owen Landeg, principal environmental public health scientist at PHE, urged people to “keep looking out” for frail or older neighbours and relatives, particularly those living alone or with a serious illness.

People were preparing for rising floodwaters in West Yorkshire on Wednesday morning, with towns in the Calder Valley laying out sandbags and flood wardens monitoring water levels.

Additional reporting by PA Media.

Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

News

Health service unions demand NHS ‘Covid heroes’ get bigger pay rise after Government recommends 1% increase

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/government-nhs-pay-rise-1-per-cent-increase-b922305.html

Health service unions demand NHS ‘Covid heroes’ get bigger pay rise after Government recommends 1% increase
T

he Government is facing growing calls to grant “Covid heroes” a bigger pay rise after recommending NHS staff are restricted to an increase of just 1 per cent.

But health service unions denounced the proposed award as a “kick in the teeth” for staff who had given “absolutely everything” to keep the public safe.

Joining the backlash on Thursday night, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer called on the government to give the NHS’s “Covid heroes” a bigger pay rise.

Sir Keir said the proposals would amount to a cut in real-terms, tweeting: “You can’t rebuild a country by cutting nurses’ pay.”

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said while the performance of the NHS had been “first class”, many people in the private sector faced losing their jobs.

“No one is doubting the NHS has been absolutely first class in this whole pandemic. What I am suggesting is that the whole economy has been under huge pressure,” he told BBC Question Time.

“When I look at people in the hospitality sector, in aviation, in retail, many of them are very, very worried they won’t even be in a job in two or three months.”

The move follows Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement in last year’s spending review of a pay freeze for most public sector workers outside the NHS.

Starmer claims planned cuts to health spending ‘hidden’ in Budget

In its submission, the pay review bodies for NHS staff and for doctors and dentists, the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) said the NHS budget was based on a headline pay rise of 1 per cent.

It suggested any award above that would require cuts to services with a “re-prioritisation” of funding within the service.

It said they needed to strike “the right balance between pay and staff numbers through systems of reward that are affordable and fit for purpose”.

The proposal was angrily condemned by Royal College of Nursing general secretary, Dame Donna Kinnair who said it would amount to an increase of just £3.50 a week in take home pay for an experienced nurse.

“This is pitiful and bitterly disappointing. The Government is dangerously out of touch with nursing staff, NHS workers and the public,” she said.

“Nobody would think that is fair in the middle of a pandemic and it will do nothing to prevent the exodus from nursing.”

Dr Chaand Nagpaul, who chairs the British Medical Association council, said it came as a “kick in the teeth” after a decade in which doctors had experienced real terms pay cuts of up to 30 per cent.

“This is a total dereliction of the Government’s moral duty and obligation to a workforce that is keeping the NHS on its feet and patients alive,” he said.

Unison head of health Sara Gorton said: “A 1 per cent pay rise is the worst kind of insult the Government could give health workers who’ve given their absolute everything over the past year.

“The public will be horrified. Staff will think it’s some kind of joke.”

For Labour, Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said: “A pay cut for NHS staff is the ultimate kick in the teeth to our NHS heroes who have done so much to keep us safe over the past year.”

A Government spokesman said ministers would “carefully” consider the recommendations of the pay review bodies when they report in late spring.

“Over one million NHS staff continue to benefit from multi-year pay deals agreed with trade unions, which have delivered a pay rise of over 12 per cent for newly-qualified nurses and will increase junior doctors’ pay scales by 8.2 per cent,” the spokesman said.

“Pay rises in the rest of the public sector will be paused this year due to the challenging economic environment, but we will continue to provide pay rises for NHS workers, on top of a £513 million investment in professional development and increased recruitment.”

Continue Reading

News

Government faces growing calls to grant NHS ‘Covid heroes’ bigger pay rise after recommending 1% increase

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/government-nhs-pay-rise-1-per-cent-increase-b922305.html

Government faces growing calls to grant NHS ‘Covid heroes’ bigger pay rise after recommending 1% increase
T

he Government is facing growing calls to grant “Covid heroes” a bigger pay rise after recommending NHS staff are restricted to an increase of just 1 per cent.

But health service unions denounced the proposed award as a “kick in the teeth” for staff who had given “absolutely everything” to keep the public safe.

Joining the backlash on Thursday night, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer called on the government to give the NHS’s “Covid heroes” a bigger pay rise.

Sir Keir said the proposals would amount to a cut in real-terms, tweeting: “You can’t rebuild a country by cutting nurses’ pay.”

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said while the performance of the NHS had been “first class”, many people in the private sector faced losing their jobs.

“No one is doubting the NHS has been absolutely first class in this whole pandemic. What I am suggesting is that the whole economy has been under huge pressure,” he told BBC Question Time.

“When I look at people in the hospitality sector, in aviation, in retail, many of them are very, very worried they won’t even be in a job in two or three months.”

The move follows Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement in last year’s spending review of a pay freeze for most public sector workers outside the NHS.

Starmer claims planned cuts to health spending ‘hidden’ in Budget

In its submission, the pay review bodies for NHS staff and for doctors and dentists, the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) said the NHS budget was based on a headline pay rise of 1 per cent.

It suggested any award above that would require cuts to services with a “re-prioritisation” of funding within the service.

It said they needed to strike “the right balance between pay and staff numbers through systems of reward that are affordable and fit for purpose”.

The proposal was angrily condemned by Royal College of Nursing general secretary, Dame Donna Kinnair who said it would amount to an increase of just £3.50 a week in take home pay for an experienced nurse.

“This is pitiful and bitterly disappointing. The Government is dangerously out of touch with nursing staff, NHS workers and the public,” she said.

“Nobody would think that is fair in the middle of a pandemic and it will do nothing to prevent the exodus from nursing.”

Dr Chaand Nagpaul, who chairs the British Medical Association council, said it came as a “kick in the teeth” after a decade in which doctors had experienced real terms pay cuts of up to 30 per cent.

“This is a total dereliction of the Government’s moral duty and obligation to a workforce that is keeping the NHS on its feet and patients alive,” he said.

Unison head of health Sara Gorton said: “A 1 per cent pay rise is the worst kind of insult the Government could give health workers who’ve given their absolute everything over the past year.

“The public will be horrified. Staff will think it’s some kind of joke.”

For Labour, Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said: “A pay cut for NHS staff is the ultimate kick in the teeth to our NHS heroes who have done so much to keep us safe over the past year.”

A Government spokesman said ministers would “carefully” consider the recommendations of the pay review bodies when they report in late spring.

“Over one million NHS staff continue to benefit from multi-year pay deals agreed with trade unions, which have delivered a pay rise of over 12 per cent for newly-qualified nurses and will increase junior doctors’ pay scales by 8.2 per cent,” the spokesman said.

“Pay rises in the rest of the public sector will be paused this year due to the challenging economic environment, but we will continue to provide pay rises for NHS workers, on top of a £513 million investment in professional development and increased recruitment.”

Continue Reading

News

Powerful 8.1 magnitude earthquake off New Zealand sparks evacuations and tsunami warnings

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/world/new-zealand-earthquake-tsunami-warning-b922184.html

Powerful 8.1 magnitude earthquake off New Zealand sparks evacuations and tsunami warnings
A

powerful magnitude 8.1 earthquake has struck in the ocean off the coast of New Zealand, prompting thousands of people to evacuate and triggering tsunami warnings across the South Pacific.

The quake was the largest in a series of tremors that struck the region over several hours, including two earlier quakes that registered magnitude 7.4 and magnitude 7.3.

It triggered warning systems and caused traffic jams and some chaos in New Zealand as people scrambled to get to higher ground.

However, it did not appear to pose a widespread threat to lives or major infrastructure, due to the remoteness of where they hit.

<p>The closest major city to the epicentre is Gisborne with a population of about 35,500  </p>

The closest major city to the epicentre is Gisborne with a population of about 35,500

/ Google Maps

The largest struck about 620 miles off the coast of New Zealand.

One of the earlier quakes hit much closer to New Zealand and awoke many people during the night as they felt a long, rumbling shaking.

“Hope everyone is ok out there,” New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern wrote on Facebook.

After the largest quake, civil defence authorities in New Zealand told people in certain areas on the East Coast of the North Island that they should move immediately to higher ground and not stay in their homes.

They said a damaging tsunami was possible.

The US Tsunami Warning System also cautioned that the larger quake could cause tsunami waves of between one and three metres inFrench Polynesia and waves of up to one metre in Niue, New Caledonia and the Solomon Islands.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said tsunamis could later strike Hawaii.

The US Geological Survey said the larger quake was centred in the remote Kermadec Islands at a depth of 12 miles.

Officials in New Zealand had hours earlier issued a tsunami warning for coastal areas after the first of the smaller earthquakes struck off its north-eastern coast.

There were no immediate reports of serious damage or casualties, and the warning was lifted just before the larger quake struck.

The US Geological Survey said the first quake was centred at a depth of 13 miles under the ocean about 108 miles north east of the city of Gisborne.

It was widely felt in New Zealand, and residents in the major cities of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch reported being shake nawake.

In 2011, a magnitude 6.3 quake hit the city of Christchurch, killing 185 people and destroying much of the city centre.

Continue Reading

News

Royal family focus on pandemic in Commonwealth show ahead of Oprah interview

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/queen-commonwealth-tv-special-harry-meghan-oprah-interview-b922158.html

Royal family focus on pandemic in Commonwealth show ahead of Oprah interview

It comes after CBS revealed that Harry and Meghan’s intimate interview with Oprah Winfrey is set to be released at 8pm in the US on Sunday, which will be in the early hours of Monday UK time.

ITV also announced it secured the exclusive UK television rights to the 90-minute interview and will air it on the Monday at 9pm.

The Palace said in a statement: “In Her Majesty’s annual Commonwealth Day message, the Queen will pay tribute to the way in which communities across the family of nations have come together in response to the pandemic.”

A Celebration for Commonwealth Day will be broadcast on BBC One at 5pm on Sunday, March 7.

<p>A Celebration for Commonwealth Day will be broadcast on BBC One at 5pm on Sunday, March 7.</p>

A Celebration for Commonwealth Day will be broadcast on BBC One at 5pm on Sunday, March 7.

/ AP

The Prince of Wales has recorded a message for the programme addressing “the universal devastation caused by the coronavirus pandemic”.

Charles will also celebrate the “critical work” being carried out by nations across the Commonwealth to combat climate change and protect its unique landscapes, marine environments and biodiversity.

Continue Reading

News

London Mayoral campaign: Sadiq Khan forced to hole-up inside coffee shop after protesters turn up at launch

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/mayor/sadiq-khan-cafe-london-mayoral-race-launch-shaun-bailey-b922137.html

London Mayoral campaign: Sadiq Khan forced to hole-up inside coffee shop after protesters turn up at launch
S

adiq Khan’s re-election campaign hit trouble today when he was forced to hole-up inside a coffee shop for an hour to avoid a small group of residents protesting about a transport scheme. 

The Mayor had chosen the Hot Milk cafe in Bounds Green for the media launch of his bid to win a second term at City Hall. 

But as news of his visit began to spread, six residents gathered outside, asking to speak with Mr Khan about a low traffic neighbourhood (LTN) introduced by Enfield council. 

They said it had made their lives a misery by forcing them to divert via the North Circular Road. 

Mr Khan, on the advice of his police protection officers, remained in the cafe for an hour in the hope the protesters would leave. When they refused to go, he made a dash for his car and ignored their requests.

Mr Khan launched his campaign for a second term with nine weeks until polling day on May 6 and after last year’s election was postponed due to Covid.

Mr Khan called for a 1945-style programme to rebuild the economy and promised to focus on “jobs, jobs, jobs” and encouraging domestic tourists back to central London.

He criticised Chancellor Rishi Sunak for failing to provide a “long-term vision” for after the lifting of lockdown, or to guarantee jobs or training and said that a £367million hole in City Hall’s finances due to Covid meant “inevitable” cuts to public services.

At the campaign launch at Hot Milk Cafe in Bounds Green, which has received £5,000 from City Hall to keep trading and £12,500 from the Mayor’s “pay it forward” advance payment scheme, Mr Khan vowed to “relentlessly bang the drum for London — both at home and around the world” to attract jobs and investment.

More than 18,000 Londoners have died with Covid. Mr Khan said he was determined to “build an even better London” in their memory.

<p>Mr Khan had chosen the Hot Milk cafe in Bounds Green for the media launch of his bid to win a second term at City Hall</p>

Mr Khan had chosen the Hot Milk cafe in Bounds Green for the media launch of his bid to win a second term at City Hall

/ PA

He said: “In 1945, a Labour government rebuilt Britain from the ashes of war. Like so many, I benefited from their work decades later as I grew up on a council estate and was given the opportunities to fulfil my potential.

“That’s why jobs, jobs, jobs are a top priority for my second term. I am hopeful that with the right support from the Government we can help get the 300,000 Londoners who have lost jobs during the pandemic back into work.”

At least 16 candidates, including several independents, are expected to run for mayor but Mr Khan said it was a “two-horse race” between himself and Tory rival Shaun Bailey.

“We’re the only two candidates who can win and the choice couldn’t be starker,” he said. Mr Bailey said the Budget was “supporting London’s recovery, because Sadiq Khan won’t”.

.

Mr Bailey said: “In the middle of a pandemic Londoners need support, not higher taxes. So as mayor, I’ll reverse these harmful decisions.”

Continue Reading

Trending