UPDATE: Bournemouth and Boscombe piers re-opened and Met Office issues new amber warning for severe gales (From Bournemouth Echo)
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UPDATE: Bournemouth and Boscombe piers re-opened and Met Office issues new amber warning for severe gales
Updated 4:00pm Thursday 6th February 2014 in News
BOURNEMOUTH and Boscombe piers have been been re-opened after Bournemouth council closed them due to the bad weather.
The seafront car park and parts of the prom were also closed this morning while seafront teams carried out a visual inspection along the whole of the promenade.
Tractors were also at Alum Chine beach moving sand.
The council said they would continue to monitor the situation along the seafront and the piers may be closed again if the situation worsens.
Some areas are still impassable because of debris and sand and residents are advised to take extra care.
The council said as the worst of the weather is due to hit on Friday night and Saturday morning they would continue to monitor what happens and respond to incidents as they arise.
A flood alert has been issued for Bournemouth beach.
Yesterday one beach hut was washed out to sea and 10 beach huts near Fisherman's Walk lift were moved by the high tide coming over the sea wall.
Andrew Brown, Seafronts Operations Manager, said:“Yesterday we experienced some strong southerly winds in combination with a very high tide along the seafront, which caused ten beach huts to the east of Fisherman’s Walk to be moved.
"With strong waves crashing against the prom one beach hut was washed into the sea. Staff have contacted all beach hut tenants affected, but for now we are waiting for the stormy weather to subside before we head down there to do any clear up.
"In line with current Met Office and Environment Agency advice, we would ask that members of the public take care on the seafront. If the weather continues we will close the piers, seafront car park and promenade as required. The safety of members of the public and our staff are our primary concern at this time.”
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A council spokesperson said they had also seen few flares washed up on the beach over the past few weeks of storms and are asking residents to take care. Residents who spot a flare are asked to contact the council immediately.
In Poole, Pinecliff Road has been closed between Beach Rd and Westminster Road due to flooding.
See all our weather coverage and pictures at bournemouthecho.co.uk/dorsetweather
At Christchurch, Neil Farmer, strategic director at Christchurch and East Dorset Councils said: “We are continuing to monitor the situation and are being reactive to any damage reported to us by our officers and members of the public.
"The coastal defences have been damaged by the succession of storms in Christchurch and the beach levels have been substantially reduced.
"Emergency repairs are being carried out to the most severely affected areas as they occur. The full cost of implementing a recovery plan to return the Christchurch coastline to pre storm conditions is currently being drawn up.
"The full cost of this work will not be known until more normal weather patterns return.
"We would like to encourage everyone to be mindful of the advice being given by the Environment Agency to stay away from the coastline.
"Large waves are causing seafronts to become very dangerous and locally this is an issue at Mudeford Quay, so however tempting we encourage people not to wave watch and to respect the sea.”
Dorset Council is urging residents to secure their property to prevent winds ripping items up and causing more damage.
Simon Parker, Dorset County Council’s emergency planning officer said: “A number of agencies are working together to ensure people are informed of the dangers and plans are in place if evacuations are needed.
“Local residents can help by ensuring their properties are protected, garden furniture secured and that any drainage ditches are clear. People, their cars and possessions should be moved to a safe or higher location.”
The agencies working with Dorset County Council include the Environment Agency, town, parish, district and borough councils, the NHS, Highways Agency, utility companies and the emergency services.
People are also being advised to take extra care along cliffs and beaches. Landslides often take place after wet weather as there is a delay in the rainwater falling and soaking into the ground. With the continuing wet weather more landslides are expected.
The Met Office has issued amber warnings for heavy rain and wind until just before midnight on Saturday.
A new amber warning for severe gales affecting coastal districts has been issued with gusts of 60-70mph forecast and 80mph in exposed areas. The warning is valid from 9pm on Friday until 11.45pm on Saturday evening.
Large waves are also expected to affect southwest facing coasts.
The warning reads: "Further spells of heavy and persistent rain will affect southern parts of England and south Wales from Thursday afternoon until Friday morning, and again from late Friday evening until early Saturday followed by frequent heavy showers.
"Gales will accompany the rain during Saturday with severe gales likely for exposed coasts in southwest England. The public should be prepared for disruption due to flooding."
The Chief Forecaster added: "Another area of low pressure will bring spells of heavy rain to southern England from Thursday afternoon to Friday morning, with 20-40 mm of rain falling widely.
"A further Atlantic frontal system will bring a band of rain quickly eastwards during Friday night and early Saturday, with the heaviest rain again likely to be across parts of southern England, followed in turn by heavy showers. Another 10-20 mm of rain and locally 30 mm will fall in the Amber area, leading to further flooding. Winds will also be a feature during Friday night and Saturday with severe gales possible around coasts in the southwest of England."
Flood warning are currently in place for the Lower Frome from Dorchester to East Stoke, and the Lower Frome from East Stoke to Wareham.
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