Edinburgh Weather: Rose Street reopened

A car was damaged by a falling tree at the Meadows. Picture: Jane Barlow

A car was damaged by a falling tree at the Meadows. Picture: Jane Barlow

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Rose Street was partially closed after high winds caused masonry to tumble from the roof of the Roxburghe Hotel, on the corner of Charlotte Square.

• Snow and blizzards forecast for Weekend.

photo shows overturned lorry on the Forth Road Bridge this morning 09/01/2015.'The Forth Road Bridge has been closed to all veichles due to the strong winds hitting scotland this morning

photo shows overturned lorry on the Forth Road Bridge this morning 09/01/2015.'The Forth Road Bridge has been closed to all veichles due to the strong winds hitting scotland this morning

• Forth Road Bridge reopens to cars.

• Driver charged after van overturns on Forth Road Bridge.

• Rail operators battle to return normal service.

The damage occurred at around 8am this morning, according to a police spokeswoman.

Tree down in Sandford gardens, Portobello.

Tree down in Sandford gardens, Portobello.

The street then reopened at 1.10pm.

A maintenance worker at the Roxburghe Hotel said: “It happened earlier this morning. It was some small chunks of masonry which came from the roof.

“As far as I am aware it was part of an old repair job on one of the chimneys which was damaged by last night’s high winds.

“Repair work is ongoing at the moment and we hope it will be completed by the end of the day.”

Police said the gales also caused damage to the roof of North Merchiston Care Home earlier this morning.

Trees are currently being cleared on Melville Terrace after branches fell causing damage to the fences on the edge of the Meadows.

The raging winds have continued to cause damage in the New Town this afternoon as police have reported the gusts caused a pane of window glass to shatter at a house in Rutland Square at 1.45pm this afternoon.

Tiles fell from the roof of a building housing an RBS branch in Blenheim Place just after 3.20pm.

All trains were cancelled earlier this morning while engineers checked the lines, with initially only a small number of services allowed.

The Forth Road Bridge reopened to cars only at around 7.25am after it was closed when a van overturned in the high winds at around 12.40am this morning.

The bridge had been open to cars only at the time, however a van whose driver had ignored this restriction was overturned by the wind just before the bridge closed completely.

Barry Colford, Chief Engineer and Bridgemaster, said: “This driver put himself and other bridge users at great risk by attempting to drive a wind-susceptible vehicle across the bridge in such conditions.

“Incredibly there were no casualties, however the driver has now been charged by Police Scotland.

“I would like to thank bridge users for their patience and understanding.

All travellers are advised to check weather and traffic reports before travelling and to plan accordingly.

There have been reports of fallen trees across the Lothians and police are urging motorists to take care on the roads.

The ferocious gales have been stirred up by an extra-powerful jet stream triggered by plunging temperatures in the United States hitting warmer air in the south.

The wild winds – which reached more than 90 miles per hour at Blackford Hill and at the Forth Road Bridge – were expected to ease today but forecasters warned that more bad weather will follow over the weekend.

Snow showers were predicted for Saturday and Sunday with blizzards expected over higher ground.

The Met Office chief forecaster warned: “As temperatures are expected to take a plunge, icy conditions are also likely on some roads.

“Snow showers will also be accompanied by strong or very strong winds and this will likely give blizzard conditions over higher ground, leading to treacherous driving conditions on higher routes.”

Five flights were cancelled to destinations within the UK this morning but most of the services were still operational, according to a spokesman for Edinburgh Airport.

Passengers were urged to check with their individual airlines if they are scheduled to fly today.

The AA advised drivers faced “potentially hazardous” conditions and police urged motorists to take care after a number of reports of fallen trees on the roads.

John Seymour, the national manager of the AA’s severe weather team, said: “Scotland, particularly, is going to take something of a battering and drivers need to be prepared for possible widespread travel disruption and challenging driving conditions.”

Elsewhere in Scotland 69,000 homes were left without power in the Highlands and gusts of 140 miles per hour were reported in the Cairngorms.