Storm Eunice wind speeds in Suffolk 'could match Great Storm of 1987'
- Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown
Wind speeds could reach 90mph in Suffolk on Friday and be "on par with the Great Storm of 1987", forecasters have said.
The Met Office has issued an amber warning for wind ahead of the arrival of Storm Eunice, meaning the conditions present a danger to life.
While the warning is in place between 5am and 9pm, people have been warned of possible flying debris and damage to homes.
The A14 Orwell Bridge, near Ipswich, is closing at 4am on Friday and is expected to be shut for most of the day due to the conditions.
Adam Dury, meteorologist at East Anglian forecasters Weatherquest, warned the winds could get close to those from the storm of October 1987, when gusts peaked at around 100mph in what was the most destructive storm to hit Britain in 300 years.
He said Storm Eunice's wind speeds may start off fairly tame in the morning before quickly picking up by midday, potentially reaching 90mph or higher.
Mr Dury said: "Through most of the morning, most of the region will see breezy conditions of about 40mph by 8am. This will rise to about 60mph by 10am.
"Wind speeds will then continue to increase into the afternoon. We are expecting gusts of between 70 and 75mph between 12pm and 2pm - there may even be areas that get speeds up to 90mph.
"Between about 12pm and 3pm will be when we get the strongest winds.
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"It will continue to be breezy into the evening, with speeds of 60 to 65mph. They will then die down into the evening and overnight.
"There is going to be a danger to life throughout the day if you're outside. If something is not tied down, it could become flying debris.
"It could be on par with the Great Storm of 1987. It's going to be gustier than what we have had in recent times."
Drivers have also been urged to take caution on the roads amid Storm Eunice on Friday, with National Highways issuing a severe weather alert across England.
Friday's forecast comes after Storm Dudley battered Suffolk over Wednesday night, bringing gusts of up to 55mph and causing trees to fall across the county.
Suffolk police revealed its control room had received more than 700 emergency calls to a number of incidents, including a tree blocking the A12 at Darsham and another bringing down power lines in Brandon.
Superintendent Kerry Cutler, of Suffolk police, said: "This is a number I can’t remember ever seeing in my seven years of being a superintendent.
“The majority of weather-related calls were reports of obstructions on the roads and at least 80 calls received were reports of trees down across roads."