Weather: Forth Road Bridge reopens after Storm Henry blows out

Dog walkers battle against the elements along Portobello beach. Picture: Scott Taylor
Dog walkers battle against the elements along Portobello beach. Picture: Scott Taylor
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THE Forth Road Bridge is open to cars only this morning, after being closed to all traffic last night in the wake of Storm Henry.

A yellow wind warning was in place this morning, with gusts of up to 70mph predicted to hit the Capital.

It follows a day of chaos, as severe conditions forced the complete closure of the Forth Road Bridge and several of the city’s key tourist attractions.

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The decision was taken to close Edinburgh Zoo, the Scott Monument and the Nelson Monument to safeguard visitors.

Both workers and members of the public were also advised to stay away from the Botanics after an on-site weather station measured wind gusts of up to 60mph yesterday morning.

Glasshouses at the gardens are already awaiting repairs after being hit by Storm Gertrude a few days ago, but staff have been unable to check for further damage due to the strong winds.

Council-run community recycling centres were also shut down in the interests of safety.

People were being warned to be vigilant and check arrangements before travelling.

A spokeswoman for the city council said: “We will continue to monitor the situation and have a number of teams on stand-by to respond to any weather-related issues.

“If the need arises, we will alert the public to any service changes or travel disruption resulting from severe weather.

“We would also advise that people take extra care if heading outside, planning travel ahead and following safety advice on the council website.”

Henry, the eighth named storm of the season, comes just days after 100mph winds from Storm Gertrude left a trail of devastation in their wake.

Oxgangs Primary School remains closed after being damaged in the storm on Friday.

Schoolchildren turned up for classes to find hundreds of bricks in a giant heap.

The outer cladding on one side of the large building was ripped off by gale-force winds, which reached top speeds of 70mph in the Capital.

Council officials said they hoped the school would reopen tomorrow.

Police Scotland issued warnings to drivers to reduce speed and watch out for debris on roads.

Train operator ScotRail cancelled some of its services in the afternoon to take account of the severe conditions.

Jacqueline Taggart, of ScotRail Alliance, said: “Once again we find ourselves preparing for extreme weather conditions hitting the country.

“Last week Storm Gertrude brought incredibly high winds and treacherous conditions to Scotland – and it looks as though Storm Henry is going to do the same.”

She added: “We have carefully tracked the progress of Storm Henry and when it will hit Scotland hardest.

“We advise all customers to check their own journey on our website before setting out to travel.”