87mph gust recorded as Storm Brendan batters Scotland

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An 87mph gust of wind has hit the Western Isles where all schools are closed to pupils as Storm Brendan batters Scotland.

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning of high winds across the west, south-west and north-east of the country between 10am and midnight on Monday.

It warns that the strongest winds are expected around exposed coasts and hills, with gusts of 60-70mph likely, and gusts of up to 80mph possible in some places, particularly around the west coast of Scotland.

An 87mph gust was recorded on South Uist in the outer Hebrides at 2pm on Monday, the strongest in the UK so far, while a 76mph gust hit Capel Curig in Wales.

Tiree in the Inner Hebrides and the Isles of Scilly were both buffeted by a 73mph gust, the third strongest wind speed recorded by early afternoon.

Western Isles Council has closed all schools and nurseries to pupils as a precaution for the day, though schools are open for staff who are expected to attend “when they deem it safe to do so”.

The council said that all bus services in the area are also likely to be cancelled on Monday.

The Met Office said that some delays to road, rail, air and ferry transport are expected, particularly for high-sided vehicles on exposed routes and bridges

Several Caledonian MacBrayne ferry services are affected, with some services cancelled due to adverse weather and others disrupted.

Northlink Ferries also told passengers there may be disruption on services to Orkney and Shetland.

Rail services were also affected with waves crashing onto the line at Saltcoats in North Ayrshire.

ScotRail tweeted that services to Glasgow Central and Largs/Ardrossan Harbour services would only run between Glasgow Central and Kilwinning in both directions.

The Met Office warns of a “widely very windy period” expected on Monday with “some disruption to travel likely”.

It added: “An area of very strong winds will move eastwards across the UK through Monday, clearing eastwards overnight.

“The strongest winds are expected around exposed coasts and hills.”

The warning covers Orkney and Shetland, Grampian, the Highlands, Western Isles, Angus, Dumfries and Galloway, the Borders and parts of Strathclyde.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (Sepa) has issued 25 flood warnings and 16 flood alerts around the country, warning of a risk of coastal flooding.

Sepa said: “The Met Office has forecast strong and sustained winds from Monday morning, January 13, through much of the week.

“Combined with naturally high tides next week, the sustained winds will create an unusual and dangerous combination of tide, storm surge and inshore waves.

“There is therefore a risk of coastal flooding to all Scotland’s coastal areas. The highest risk is around high tides from midday Monday through to Tuesday afternoon.

“There is a flooding risk to coastal road and rail routes and coastal communities right around Scotland’s coastline.”

Restrictions were placed on several bridges, with the Cromarty, Dornoch, Skye and Kessock bridges among those closed to high-sided vehicles.

Some visitor attractions were also affected, with Dumbarton Castle and Dundonald Castle shut due to the weather.

Edinburgh Zoo said that last admission would be at 1pm due to Storm Brendan.

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