Thousands still without power as full impact of storms Malik and Corrie on Scotland revealed

More than 45,000 homes were left without power for another day following back-to-back storms as dawn revealed the true devastation left by the severe weather fronts.

Trees which had stood for centuries were snapped in two by hurricane-force winds that raged across the north of Scotland at 92mph on Sunday night., bringing down power lines, shutting roads and crushing graveyard head stones.

Some families were told it would be Wednesday before their power could be re-connected.

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Last night, the Met Office warned of more windy weather on the way on Tuesday, which could cause further damage and disruption because the direction of the gales would be different to Storm Corrie.

Engineers from Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks repair power lines in Edzell, Scotland. The area was hit by two storms - Malik and Corrie - in quick succession over the weekend, leaving tens of thousands without power. Picture: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

Thousands of primary and secondary pupils enjoyed a day off school after many buildings were robbed of power or heating.

ScotRail struggled to provide a national rail service as many routes were blocked by blown-down trees and branches.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney used an interview on BBC’s Good Morning Scotland to float the possibility that power lines may have to go underground in light of future vulnerability to infrastructure, due to climate change.

It is only two months since many parts of the north east and the Borders were battered by Storm Arwen, which interrupted power to 200,000 homes. Then, on Saturday, Storm Malik hit with winds of 85mph before Storm Corrie roared in on Sunday night, with 92mph recorded at Stornoway and 91mph at Inverbervie in Kincardineshire.

Mr Swinney said: “Should we look to be undergrounding power lines? Obviously, there'll be a financial impact of that on the investment that's got to be made in the network, but these are all issues that need to be looked at given the increased severity and incidents of this type.”

At Murray Cemetery near Muir of Ord in Invernesshire, centuries-old trees were snapped in two by Corrie, crushing several graves below. A garage roof had blown off at nearby Marybank and around 12 large trees closed the A862 between Muir of Ord and Conon Bridge.

Power company SSEN said it was on red alert following ‘significant’ destruction caused in quick succession by Malik and Corrie. The company said extreme wind gusts exceeding 90mph were stronger than recorded during Storm Arwen in November. As of 10am yesterday, 40,000 homes were without power in Aberdeenshire, Angus, Perthshire, Highlands, Western Isles and the Moray Coast.

Of those, around 19,000 are linked to two major faults in the Stonehaven and Deeside areas, which were expected to be repaired later in the day. Hot food vans, offering steaks, Highland hog and fish and chips, have been dispatched to many of the affected communities.

All Scotrail services were suspended at 6pm on Sunday in anticipation of damaging gusts from Corrie disturbing overhead power lines. Some suburban services in Glasgow were badly affected yesterday and blockages stopped services between Inverness and Aberdeen, Aberdeen and Dundee, Inverness to Perth and Kyle of Lochalsh.

In Aberdeenshire, around 80 schools were closed, with some pupils having to reschedule prelim exams. Highland had two secondaries shut, Kingussie and Kinlochleven High Scools, plus eight primaries and three nurseries.

In Moray, Speyside and Milne’s High schools were closed, along with three primaries and one nursery.

Richard Miles of the Met Office said wind warnings were now in place for further gales on Tuesday across Central, Tayside and Fife, Grampian, Highlands and Islands and Orkney and Shetland.

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