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Chaos as strong winds and rain batter Sussex
Buy this photo » High seas at Brighton Marina on Sunday, November 25
Sussex was battered by strong winds and heavy rain this weekend, bringing widespread disruption.
A car was crushed by a tree, a petrol station’s roof was damaged and street Christmas decorations were blown away as gusts of 60mph hit the county.
One lane of the A27 was closed for hours on Saturday afternoon (November 24) as the carriageway flooded, while trees came down across the county, causing traffic chaos.
A city centre’s Christmas lights switch-on was cancelled and train services were disrupted after metal sheeting blew onto the line.
Satellite dishes blew off homes, houses were damaged and a garden wall was crushed after a tree collapsed on it.
The BP garage in Ditchling Road, Brighton, was closed yesterday morning (November 25) after part of its roof canopy collapsed at 1am.
A corrugated steel sheet fell down and a second was flapping loose when firefighters arrived.
A member of staff at the garage yesterday said: “The roof has been coming off and firefighters had to attend.
“A sheet fell down from the roof. Luckily no one was there because it was so early. But we are closed this morning.
“They put cones out and covered the area.”
The same problem was reported at Asda at The Crumbles, Eastbourne, at 1am yesterday.
Two trees fell on a man’s blue Peugeot as he drove along the A286 at Fernhurst, West Sussex, at about 2.10am on Sunday.
He was taken to hospital suffering from back injuries but was not thought to be seriously injured.
Trees came down over the weekend in Dorset Gardens and Preston Park, Brighton; Lewes Road, Cooksbridge, near Lewes; Cotswold Road and Titmore Road, Worthing; the A264, Horsham; the A21 Northiam, near Rye; Udimore Road, Bexhill; the A21 Flimwell, near Robertsbridge; and North End Road, Yapton, near Arundel.
Police retrieved a piece of tarpaulin which blew onto the A23 close to the junction with the A272, near Bolney.
Roofs were damaged in Bath Road and The Boulevard, Worthing, overnight on Saturday.
A Sky dish was blown off a roof in Eirene Avenue, Goring. Further west, a house was damaged in Woodlands Avenue, Rustington.
A tree came down and hit a garden wall in Cotswold Road, Worthing.
On Saturday from about 1pm a lane of the A27 near Hove was closed.
This worsened football traffic, already affected because of a shunt at the junction of Coldean Lane and Ditchling Road in Brighton.
The A27 eastbound between the A270 Upper Shoreham Road, Stoney Lane and the A293 was shut because of heavy rainfall.
In the Lanes, Brighton, firefighters were called at 9.30am on Saturday after reports of street Christmas decorations swaying dangerously.
They secured them but were called out for a similar problem in High Street, Uckfield, at 2.30am yesterday.
Chichester’s Christmas Festivities event – planned for Saturday night – was cancelled after organisers worried that heavy rain and winds could be dangerous for crowds.
Fireworks were planned but on Saturday they made a decision to cancel them.
Kim Long, city centre manager, said: “As a result of the weather it was decided to cancel the lights switch-on due to the fact that all of the entertainment was rained off and all of the surrounding events had to be cancelled.”
Train services were disrupted yesterday morning after a sheet of metal blew on to the line near Littlehampton.
Services were suspended while the obstruction was removed and passengers faced delays of up to 30 minutes before trains returned to normal.
West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service was busiest between 1am and 2am on Sunday.
East Sussex Fire and Rescue responded to numerous calls between 2am and 2.30am.
The Met Office reported gusts of wind of up to 60mph in Shoreham at about 2am yesterday.
The Environment Agency has issued a flood warning for the River Rother.
The wind is expected to die down today (November 26) but more heavy rain is predicted.
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