High winds wreak havoc across island

TRAFFIC was brought to a grinding halt during yesterday’s rush hour after a force 11 storm on Wednesday night brought down trees, branches, hedges and debris.

Guernsey Civil Protection was called to Crown Pier at 11.30pm after the States Covid-19 testing tent was blown into the water, and some team members were out until 4am.

Civil Protection officer Dave Hodge said 10 team members assisted with clear ups around the island overnight. ‘Team members were sent to specific locations across the island for trees and hedges in the road,’ he said.

‘We tried to clear roads where and when we could for road safety. Civil Protection are still out on the roads to inspect the side lanes. I suspect some of those are still blocked with trees that haven’t been discovered yet. I think it will take a solid day or two to clear everything up.’

Although Mr Hodge said the road closure with the biggest potential effect was the main access to Fort George development. The access point at the top of the Val Des Terres, near Rue de Belevedere, is the main road into and out of the Fort George estate. Mr Hodge said emergency services may have found the small side lane into Fort George difficult to navigate in an emergency.

Civil Protection also had a significant call out for an outdoor shed that had been picked up from someone’s garden and thrown into a neighbour’s property.

Mr Hodge said no one had seen the shed while it was airborne, but it was undeniable that the shed was not in the same garden as it had been previously.

Its owner’s belongings had been scattered as well, and they tried to contain their things with Civil Protection assistance at the height of the storm.

A large tree was also down in Rue De La Porte, Kings Mills. Chris Stonebridge and his team from Treevolution tree surgeons were on hand to remove it Thursday morning as it had totally closed the road.

Near La Houguette School, a large section of a granite wall collapsed into a field on Route Des Paysans.

Gele Road in Vazon was also partially closed by a downed tree. Debris blocked the pedestrian and cycling pavement on the Val Des Terres as well.

Rue Piette and Route de L’Eglise also suffered unexpected closures on Thursday morning due to the weather, meaning that traffic coming up Rectory Hill had to go down Rohais de Haut, leading to serious traffic problems in the Rohais.

Overall storm damage was in line with previous red list storms, Mr Hodge said.

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