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    UK Storm Cuts Loose with Rain, Wind

    September 24, 2012, 6:40:43 AM EDT

    Soaking rain and strong winds will persist in the U.K. through Tuesday as a strong early fall storm hangs over the British archipelago.

    Monday, the U.K. Met Office posted rainfall warnings and alerts for much of the country, according to its website. Wind warnings were focused upon southeastern England.

    Motorists and commuters were warned of "significant disruption," owing to flooding, the BBC News website said.

    Scenes of flooding, wind and wild seas were shown online by the U.K. news media.

    At least one death was blamed on weather, that of a woman struck by a falling tree branch in high winds near London on Sunday, according to the BBC.

    Met Office forecasters warned of winds to 70 mph along the southeast coast. Highest rainfall was expected to be at least 80 mm, or more than 3 inches.

    Torrential rain targeted the south and west of England overnight and early Monday, hitting Somerset and Devon hard. Downpours left rainfall to about 2.5 inches at Dunkeswell, data available to AccuWeather.com showed.

    Area roads were inundated, tempting motorists to drive through floodwaters, according to the Daily Mail website.

    The local flood defense in Blackford was "swamped" for the first time since it was installed in the 1960s, the Daily Mail said.


    400x266_09241341_ukmet09-24

    Composite radar for 1415 UTC Monday shows a band of soaking rain stretched over northern and eastern England, northern Wales, southern Scotland and northeastern Ireland.(U.K. Met Office)


    Monday, the heaviest rain shifted north and east, with amounts topping 1 inch within six hours along the northern Welsh borders.

    The storm center, deep low pressure over eastern England as of early afternoon, local time, is forecast to hook northward and westward, loitering over northern England and Wales through at least Tuesday.

    Further outbreaks of heavy rain will happen as far north as Scotland, even west into Ireland.

    The big storm comes on the heels of a summer that was the wettest in 100 years, according to the U.K. Met Office.

    As it organized northeast of the Azores late last week, the storm may have gotten a boost from the former Hurricane Nadine, which at the time was weakening south of the mid-Atlantic islands.

    The storm then lifted northeastward, crossing northwestern France Sunday night, then reaching southern England by daybreak on Monday.

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