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Monday, May 27, 2024
Monday May 27, 2024
Monday May 27, 2024

16 Million Brits Hit the Roads Amid London Station Closures and 70mph Winds

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Christmas travel chaos continues as major London train stations shut down, motorways gridlocked, and weather warnings issued

The Christmas getaway for more than 16 million Brits turned chaotic as roads experienced gridlock and major London train stations faced closures. Travel disruptions are expected to spill over into Christmas Eve, with King’s Cross and Paddington stations closed due to engineering works. In addition to the station closures, 70mph winds are forecasted, leading to concerns about power cuts, building damage, and travel chaos.

Saturday witnessed motorways jammed, hour-long queues at the Port of Dover, and crowded train stations as individuals sought to reach their destinations for Christmas celebrations. The closure of London Paddington until Wednesday further adds to the travel challenges, affecting mainline trains serving Heathrow Airport.

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As the Met Office issues two yellow weather warnings for parts of the country, gusts of up to 70mph are expected in the north of Scotland and northern and central areas of England. Meteorologists warn of potential disruptions to rail networks, ferries, and advise caution for those traveling on roads.

A yellow weather alert for rain covering much of Wales has been in place, with concerns about flooding and travel disruption lasting until 6 pm on Christmas Eve. Between 20 to 40mm of rain is expected widely, with 60 to 80mm on higher ground.

The RAC has urged motorists to plan travel before 11 am or after 6 pm on Christmas Eve to reduce congestion risks. Eurostar is running extra trains between London and Paris to balance earlier cancellations, while Eurotunnel operates its usual timetable for pre-booked customers.

The traffic chaos coincides with the ongoing debate about underinvestment in the UK’s domestic rail infrastructure, resulting in record delays and cancellations. The Department for Transport asserts that efforts are being made to minimize congestion during the festive period, emphasizing the government’s unprecedented investment in transport infrastructure.

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