Scotland's weather: Gales reach 108mph today as rush-hour travel disrupted across country

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Severe gales are disrupting travellers across Scotland today with ferries and trains cancelled and more than 500 homes suffering power cuts.

Winds reached 108mph on the summit of Cairn Gorm, with 69mph on Fair Isle, 66mph recorded in Kirkwall, 63mph in Lerwick and 61mph at Loch Glascarnoch, north west of Dingwall, the Met Office reported.

A yellow be aware weather warning is in place.

A yellow be aware weather warning is in place.

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks said 514 homes had lost power after high winds damaged high-voltage cables.

Areas affected included Muir of Ord, near Inverness, Insch in Aberdeenshire, Crieff, Kames near Tighnabruaich in Argyll and parts of Orkney.

A spokesman said 104 customers remained cut off at 9am and it was hoped they would all be reconnected by 1pm.

A flood warning for Strath Oykel, west of Lairg in the Highlands, was issued by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency.

Heavy coastal surges and strong winds batter the coast at Troon in a previous storm. Picture: Robert Perry

Heavy coastal surges and strong winds batter the coast at Troon in a previous storm. Picture: Robert Perry

CalMac cancelled ferries on seven of its west coast routes, with NorthLink halting sailings between Scrabster and Stromness in Orkney.

The disruption affected routes from Oban to Barra, Coll/Tiree, Mallaig to Armadale in Skye, Mull to Iona, Tayinloan in Kintyre to Gigha, Tarbert to Portavadie, and Barra to Eriskay.

The Tay Road Bridge was open to cars only after winds topped 60mph, with a 30mph speed limit imposed.

The Forth Road Bridge was closed to double-decker buses, with winds reaching 52mph.

Strong winds also affected the Erskine, Dornoch, Kessock and Skye bridges.

Police warned of water on carriageways posing a driving hazard on roads across the Lothians, Borders, Fife and on motorways in and around Glasgow.

A crash which blocked the westbound carriageway of the Kincardine Bridge around 8:30am added to problems.

In Orkney, the Churchill barriers link to South Ronaldsay were closed because of the winds.

Winds reached 51mph in South Uist, 47mph at Tulloch Bridge, near Fort William, and 46mph in Prestwick, Islay and Tiree, with 41mph recorded at Leuchars in Fife.

Some ScotRail trains on the Far North Line were cancelled between Ardgay or Lairg and Wick/Thurso so the route could be checked for damage, including trees or other debris blown onto the track.

The CalMac disruption comes on top of other cancellations caused by the MV Hebrides being damaged and taken out of service by crashing into Lochmaddy harbour on Sunday.

A Met Office yellow - “be aware” - severe weather warning is in force until 1pm across the whole of Scotland, apart from the far south west, and north-east England.

However, the warning was not expected to be increased to amber, which would trigger the naming of Britain's first storm of the autumn - Storm Angus.

A spokeswoman said: “Potential impacts could include minor travel disruption with some bridge restrictions, and possible damage to trees and structures.

“Additionally, large waves will build off northern and western coasts with the risk of some wave overtopping.”

She said a “vigorous” area of low pressure would pass to the north of Scotland this morning, “bringing a brief spell of very strong winds before they ease down from the north west by the early afternoon.”

A spokeswoman for the Scottish Government’s Transport Scotland agency said: “All of the latest information on the trunk roads is available on the Traffic Scotland website and Twitter feed, and we would urge people to check travel operators’ websites for updates.”