Scotland Hit By Gales And Blizzards

Severe storm-force winds and heavy snowfalls have hit Scotland disrupting travel and damaging buildings.

Blizzards and gales batter Scotland

Severe storm-force winds and heavy snowfalls have hit Scotland disrupting travel and damaging buildings.

Gales have gusted up to 100mph and heavy snows are affecting higher routes. The Met Office has raised its wind warning to a red alert.

A lorry has blown over on the Kingston Bridge in Glasgow in violent windsThe Tay, Forth, Erskine and Skye bridges are closed and the Kingston Bridge in Glasgow is shut due to two overturned lorries.

There has been disruption to flights as well on rail, ferry and bus routes.

Gale force winds have already gusted at 102mph in Edinburgh, 96mph at Salsburgh and Islay, 91 mph in Glasgow, Campbeltown and Drumalbin, 86mph in Oban and 84 mph in Prestwick.

Significant damage has been caused across the SSE power network in Scotland, particularly in Argyll and the Trossachs.

The Clyde has come over its banks in several areas, with reports of flooding in Renfrew.

There have been blizzards on the A9 at Aviemore and the route has been closed in several places by fallen trees.

Commuters across Scotland have been urged to travel with caution and Central, Lothian and Borders, Strathclyde and Tayside police advised people not to drive unless absolutely necessary.

All rail services between Inverness/Aberdeen and Edinburgh/Glasgow Queen Street and in the central belt have been suspended.

ScotRail said passengers were advised not to travel.

Network Rail Scotland said chainsaw gangs were out on the network clearing multiple tree falls.

Strathclyde Fire and Rescue Service said it had had 450 call-outs since midnight and 180 incidents were still in progress.

Glasgow Airport has warned that cancellations are expected due to high winds. Edinburgh Airport is not accepting inbound traffic and part of the terminal has been damaged.

The Met Office has issued a warning of heavy snowfall and blizzard conditions for northern Scotland for much of Tuesday.

Both the wind and snow warnings apply until 18:00 on Tuesday.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) has issued flood warnings for the Moy Bridge area in the Highlands and locations in Tayside.

BBC Scotland forecaster Stav Danaos said: "Strong south-westerly winds will veer westerly and increase to reach severe gale force, with storm force gusts likely through the central belt and the south. Damage and disruption is likely from 95mph gusts.

"By the afternoon the strongest winds will then transfer to the north and north-east of the country, up to 70mph, but all parts will still remain pretty windy with gales in the west."

Wednesday is forecast to be another wet day with some persistent heavy rain, especially in the west, which could lead to some flooding.

Scottish Transport Minister Keith Brown urged members of the public to heed warnings from emergency and other agencies to stay off the roads.

He also told BBC Scotland that work to deal with the fall-out of the bad weather had already started, but warned some operations would have to wait until the wind died down.

Mr Brown said: "The patience that the public has shown to the call that's been made by the police and others to make sure there is no travel in certain areas, their co-operation is really appreciated, because it makes it easier for the crews to go about their business."