This live event has finished
- Poole Bridge is stuck open after a lightning strike
- Asda in Poole is also believed to have been hit by lightning as well as Barclays House
- Blandford Road in Hamworthy is due to be closed at 10am because of fears the road might collapse due to issues with a burst sewer
- The Met Office has warned of 30mm of rain and wind speeds up to 80mph from tonight and lasting for at least 24 hours
- Further flooding is expected, particularly in central southern England, and there could be huge waves and high tides, leading to flooding
The traffic feed is showing that both New Road in Ferndown and Poole Lifting Bridge are still closed.
Thanks for following the blog - stay safe!
The Met Office has just issued an amber warning for wind - meaning be prepared - that comes into force at 8am tomorrow.
It's already really blustery out there, but apparently it will get worse.
Here's the official statement:
"Winds are expected to gust to around 70 mph over coasts, and 50-60 mph inland, whilst rain will be heavy at times.
"The public should be prepared for the risk of disruption to transport and power due to fallen trees.
"Additionally, large waves bring the risk of flooding in some coastal areas."
The warning will be in place until 3pm, and covers all of Dorset and Wiltshire too.
We're signing off our live coverage for tonight, but we'll be back early tomorrow morning with updates.
The fallen tree on the A351 at Sandford has been cleared.
Possibility of a Severe Flood Warning at Christchurch Harbour this evening. Stay alert and up to date: http://t.co/Ryu4Diw70R— @watch_weather 04 February 2014
South West Trains say that services are likely to be affected tomorrow:
Changes to trains on Wednesday 5 February. More information here: http://t.co/YfJRWM3G8H— @SW_Trains 04 February 2014
Poole Bridge remains closed:
We're still battling against the strong winds to try and lower Poole Bridge manually. We're now enlisting the help of a JCB! More info soon.— @BoroughofPoole 04 February 2014
#dorsetweather A351 Sandford Road partially blocked due to a fallen tree around B3075 Morden Road— @TravelDorset 04 February 2014
One of the roads partially blocked due to a fallen tree is the A351 at Sandford.
#dorsetweather be careful out there tonight there have already been 5 reported fallen trees across Dorset's Roads - stay safe— @TravelDorset 04 February 2014
A police spokesman also said nobody was injured when the lamp post came down at Ferndown.
Dorset Police say the A347 at Ferndown will likely be closed until at least 10.30pm while the fallen lamp post and associated electrical cables are made safe. The lamp post came down near the Porsche garage.
Flood Warning at Christchurch Harbour Site check for updates here http://t.co/ZxeXjKZinV #floodaware— @EnvAgencySW 04 February 2014
Keep away from seafronts and promenades when waves and winds are high –respect the sea and resist the temptation to ‘wave watch’ #floodaware— @EnvAgencySW 04 February 2014
It has been incredibly hard to get the ferry into the Shell Bay side and also the road once cars have disembarked is virtually impassable.— @SandbanksFerry 04 February 2014
Once again the crew feel continuing is jeopardising the safety of the vessel, the crew themselves and passengers.— @SandbanksFerry 04 February 2014
The service will not re commence this evening but we hope to run as normal tomorrow from 07.00 although this is weather dependant.— @SandbanksFerry 04 February 2014
With the wind blowing due east and far stronger than we anticipated, the service is being suspended after the 20.20 Sandbanks departure.— @SandbanksFerry 04 February 2014
The A347 has been closed in Ferndown at Dudsbury Road after high winds brought down a lamp post.
Flood Warning at Poole Harbour at Wareham check for updates here http://t.co/uPmCnR6iMj #floodaware— @EnvAgencySW 04 February 2014
Flood Warning at Swanage Bay check for updates here http://t.co/53ZbDmm20y #floodaware— @EnvAgencySW 04 February 2014
We're attempting to manually lower Poole Bridge to carry out repairs to the control systems. The road remains closed. More info soon. Thanks— @BoroughofPoole 04 February 2014
We are still carrying out repairs to Poole Bridge, which is affecting rush hour traffic. Please use Twin Sails. Sorry if you're late home.— @BoroughofPoole 04 February 2014
We're going to keep the blog open in case there's any disruption caused by the weather this evening. You can keep us posted on any flooded roads near you in the comments below.
We still haven't heard anything new on the situation with Poole Bridge.
Borough of Poole said it was "unlikely" to be fixed by 5pm.
As soon we we hear more we will let you know.
@Bournemouthecho traffic leaving Poole Docks is manic!! Not moved for 15 mins!!! http://t.co/tHQ8foPKss— @mowlamb 04 February 2014
The Environment Agency is expecting to issue severe flood warnings as heavy rain and high tides sweep in overnight, with particular concern for parts of West Dorset. Read the latest statement below:
High sea levels combined with strong winds and large waves will increase the risk of coastal flooding along the south west and southern coasts tonight and into Wednesday.
After the wettest January on record in places, further widespread rain – falling on already saturated ground – could cause river and surface water flooding in the south and west of England as well as parts of the midlands into the weekend.
Severe flood warnings – which mean that there is danger to life – are likely to be issued along the Dorset coastline for the Wednesday morning high tide.
Since Friday evening over 117,000 homes have been protected from flooding and over 74,000 properties have been sent a free flood warning. Around 270 homes have been flooded.
Since early December, the country has faced an extraordinary period of severe weather and flooding. However, flood schemes have defended more than 1.2 million homes and businesses, and protected nearly 2,500 square kilometres of farmland across England.
This week Environment Agency teams continue to be out in force, deploying demountable defences, deploying sandbags along riverbanks, clearing river blockages, monitoring water levels, and sending out flood warnings.
John Curtin, head of Incident Management at the Environment Agency, said: “Following the wettest January on record in some places we are now set to experience successive bands of heavy rain heavy rain fall lasting into the weekend.
“With further river and coastal flooding expected this week we have teams working around the clock to protect homes and communities, and over 117,000 homes have been protected over the past three days.
“Strong winds and waves could be dangerous, and we would urge people to take care near coastal paths and promenades for fear of being swept away, and not to drive through flood water.
“We have particular concern for West Bay, Weymouth, Preston Beach and Chiswell in Dorset.”
“In the face of this severe weather we would also remind people that they can sign up to receive free flood warnings, check their flood risk and keep up to date with the latest situation on the Environment Agency website and on social media using #floodaware.”
The Environment Agency currently only has one flood warning in place for our area, which is for the Lower Frome from East Stoke to Wareham.
A post on the website from earlier today says: "The River levels in the Lower Frome from East Stoke to Wareham remain above Flood Warning thresholds. "
"High groundwater levels are adding to river flow. Up to 20mm of rainfall is expected on Tuesday evening overnight into Wednesday, and levels may respond further."
"We will continue to monitor the conditions and will update this message as the situation changes."
We have been working to restore defences and rebuild Chesil beache. #floodaware http://t.co/S1JloRGLyl— @EnvAgencySW 04 February 2014
With Stormy weather expected to hit overnight/tomorrow, I'll step away from motoring & warn sightseers too! #StaySafe http://t.co/LwUFxCGaWa— @AASORT 04 February 2014
Blandford Incident room staff preparing for high tides on Dorset coast tonight and tomorrow morning. #floodaware http://t.co/wXbcCRtLf8— @EnvAgencySW 04 February 2014
Winds of up to 80mph have also been forecast for Friday night and into Saturday, with public being made aware of disruption to travel.
A yellow warning has been issued and is valid from 12.15am until 9am which says: "Another area of heavy rain will reach the far southwest of the country late on Friday evening and spread across remaining areas during Saturday morning.
"The rain will be accompanied by very strong winds, with gusts to severe gale force (70 mph, perhaps locally 80 mph), mainly in exposed and coastal areas.
"The public should be aware of disruption to travel from the combination of this heavy rain with the very strong winds, especially in areas where flooding has occurred recently, or is ongoing."
The Met Office has now issed weather warnings for everyday for the rest of the week up to and including Saturday.
The warnings for Thursday and Friday are new and read: "A further spell of heavy and persistent rain now seems much more likely to affect much of southern England and parts of south Wales later on Thursday evening and during the first part of Friday.
"This updates the warning issued on Monday, extending the start time back into Thursday and extending the area somewhat further north and west.
"The public should be aware that further disruption due to flooding may occur (or be worsened in some areas)."
We've spoken to Borough of Poole who say they are hoping the Poole Bridge will be operating again by the end of today. We will of course keep you updated if we hear anything more on this.
Here is some video from Blandford Road. Poole council have advised that despite the road closure, businesses are still open.
Angie, from the Murco petrol station, just yards from the roadworks, said: "Normally I would have a forecourt full by now. Its just absolutely dead, yesterday was the same. It is diabolical."
Our reporter Jim has been speaking to businesses on Blandford Road.
Sam Patterson, general manager of Snows, the authorised Volvo cars dealer and service centre, Blandford Road, told him: "At the moment our customers cannot actually get here to be able to get their cars serviced on time. We cannot get our staff here so everybody is having to start work earlier in the morning to be able to get through the traffic. Before 7.45am its OK, but as soon as the schools start it goes absolutely nuts. People are just putting off appointments at the moment. They are giving up"
We have more on the Blandford Road closure, which we've now heard won't happen until lunchtime today:
Wessex Water says a 40 metre section of road will be closed from lunchtime today between Turlin Moor and Allens Lane and the closure is likely to extend across the weekend.
A spokesman said: “A section of Blandford Road will be closed to traffic while repairs to a burst sewer are carried out.
“The closure, which will be in place from around midday today, has been agreed by Borough of Poole to ensure the safety of motorists and workers on site.
“Repairs are expected to be completed by next week and we will be working 24 hours a day to ensure repairs are completed as quickly as possible.
“Wessex Water apologises for any disruption this emergency work causes and reminds people that businesses remain open as usual.”
The water company said there were no concerns about the road collapsing as the sewer crosses the main road rather than runs along it, which is why the road closure is required.
@Bournemouthecho @TobyGranville Branksome Chine Flooded again this morning. Council workers on the scene pumping out http://t.co/NiFHEFy4rG— @BeejCurtis 04 February 2014
We've just heard from our photographer Sally who says Blandford Road isn't completely closed. One lane has been closed and is being used by workmen. We're seeking clarification on this.
The weather appears to be brightening up but is set to take a turn for the worse later on.
The Met Office has issued a 'yellow' warning for strong winds and heavy rain, which is valid from 3pm this afternoon until just before midnight.
The warning says: "Very strong winds and heavy rain will return to southwestern parts during Tuesday afternoon and evening, eventually spreading into some eastern parts of Northern Ireland later in the evening.
"Gusts of 60 to 70 mph are expected in many coastal areas, perhaps reaching 80 mph in the most exposed spots Further inland, gusts of 50 to 60 mph are more likely. Strong winds may cause some disruption, particularly due to fallen trees. Large waves and high tides may again give rise to some coastal flooding.
"In addition, many places will see 10 to 20 mm of rain later on Tuesday, which may cause some additional flooding.
"The public should be aware of the potential for disruption due to this combination of weather hazards."
Latest #UKstorm is looming in Atlantic. More #rain and #floods Tuesday night & Wednesday with severe gales. Darren B http://t.co/70QmoA965v— @bbcweather 04 February 2014
Our reporter Jim has just been out to Poole Bridge and says the road has been closed at the Poole end, looking like it may be closed for some time.
Blandford Road in Hamworthy is due to be closed at 10am because of fears the road might collapse due to issues with a burst sewer.
Borough of Poole have tweeted the following this morning:
1/2 Due to issues with the burst sewer we are having to close Blandford Road. Traffic will not be able to turn left from Turlin Moor or— @BoroughofPoole 04 February 2014
2/2 get to Poole directly from Upton. You will need to go via Holes Bay. Diversions are being put in place. Apologies for the inconvenience.— @BoroughofPoole 04 February 2014
We've been told the Asda store on West Quay Road was struck by lightning around 5.30am-6am this morning and it knocked the power out temporarily which reset some of the tills.
Engineers have been there working for the past few hours but the store is back up and running now.
There was near traffic gridlock in Hamworthy during this morning's rush hour with crawling traffic in both directions on Blandford Road.
A lane restriction caused by the burst sewer at the junction with Allens Lane meant slow moving traffic heading towards Upton, while traffic heading into Poole town was backed up due to the closure of Poole Bridge which lost power after a lightning strike.
The bridge is stuck in the up position and engineers are currently on site.
Some bus routes are being directed across the Twin Sails Bridge and missing out lower Hamworthy.
An ongoing fault is affecting the Sopley and Bransgore areas. The fault to the overhead high voltage network was identified at 9.30pm last night.
Initially 150 customers were affected and power has been restored to half of them.
Engineers are on site this morning and they are fitting a generator to reconnect and then they will repair it.
The clean up from yesterday's high tide and strong wind is still ongoing this morning! http://t.co/C4fUoOi5h2— @SandbanksFerry 04 February 2014
We've heard Barclays House is not in darkness after reports of a lightning strike earlier today.
We've been told the Asda store on West Quay Road is up and running and open for business after reports of a lightning strike earlier today.
Here's a picture of Poole Bridge stuck in the open position after the lightning strike, which has been taken by Andy Brignell
We've just been speaking to Borough of Poole who have given us some more details on the lightning strike at Poole Bridge.
It was the 7.30am lift which was affected. Engineers were on site within 15 minutes and are currently establishing whether there's any damage to the bridge or if it is just a trip.
They are not aware of any traffic issues.
The Met Office has warned of 30mm of rain and wind speeds up to 80mph from tonight and lasting for at least 24 hours.
@Bournemouthecho poole old bridge broken down, been stuck in the air for 2 hours!— @Annawesty 04 February 2014
@Bournemouthecho Hail deep enough to leave footprints :) http://t.co/VJ5vkbBnZv— @Tashirasbubble 04 February 2014
Dramatic skies this morning! @Bournemouthecho http://t.co/a0SJC7omCK— @dnheys 04 February 2014
@Bournemouthecho Looks like it's been snowing here from the #HailStones http://t.co/KG0ziy9Mdp— @JackKingman1 04 February 2014
Poole 'Old' Bridge is currently out of use, all route 8, 9 and 152 services are using the Twin Sails Bridge until further notice.— @Morebusco 04 February 2014
If you know of any other disruption caused by the weather then please leave a comment below.
We'd also love to see your pictures and video footage, you can send them to us via the following ways:
Good morning all. Poole Bridge is stuck open after a lightning strike this morning.
The A350 Poole Bridge is believed to have been hit by lightning during a hail storm this morning.
The Twin Sails bridge is reportedly still usable.
Asda in Poole is also believed to have been hit by lightning as well as Barclays House.