Northern continental Europe and the UK braced heavy rains and hurricane-force winds of up to 145 kilometres per hour in parts over the weekend, brought on by a storm known as Storm Ciara.
Hundreds of flights were cancelled at airports across Britain, the Netherlands and Germany as a result.
In Germany, where Ciara was reportedly called ‘Sabine’, around 180 flights in and out of Frankfurt airport were axed, equating to nearly 15 per cent of all planned flights.
Other modes of transportation were also affected, including Britain’s Network Rail and Deutsche Bahn in Germany’s long-distance train travel, along with a multitude of tourist attractions, including the cancellation of the popular changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace.
London’s eight royal parks, home to more than 170,000 trees across 5,000 acres, including Hyde Park, were also closed.
Very big delays at airports around Europe because of #StormCiara
Number of cancellations
Heathrow – 472 flights
Gatwick – 333 flights
Amsterdam – 247 flights
Birmingham – 101 flights
Edinburgh – 85 flights
Manchester – 74 flights pic.twitter.com/sgQMtXJd2A
— Flightradar24 (@flightradar24) February 9, 2020
— ?????????????? (@ColeraineMeteo) February 9, 2020
UK being battered by Storm Ciara with heavy rains and winds of over 145km/h pic.twitter.com/XmtRnoXrjH
— TRT World Now (@TRTWorldNow) February 10, 2020
Sporting events were also hit, with Manchester City advising on Twitter its English Premier League football match against West Ham would be postponed “due to extreme and escalating weather conditions”.
In the Netherlands, all matches in the Eridivisie – the nation’s highest echelon of professional football – were cancelled, along with most outdoor sporting events.
Scotland’s Women’s Six Nations rugby match against England was also cancelled.
British Airways breaks transatlantic flight record
A British Airways jet that flew from New York City to London that made the most of the conditions is believed to have made the fastest ever subsonic flight across the transatlantic – shaving 102 minutes off its scheduled flight time – thanks to Storm Ciara.
The Boeing 747-436 was due to land at London Heathrow Airport at 6.25am but arrived at 4.43am (local time), completing the 5,630-kilometre transatlantic journey in four hours and 56 minutes.
A Virgin Atlantic flight also made use of the unusual tailwinds, having arrived just a minute behind the British Airways jet, according to flight-tracking website FlightRadar24.
The Virgin Airbus A350-1041 reportedly made the same flight in four hours and 57 minutes.
Featured image: Man had close call with #StormCiara off Maryport UK (Twitter/@HoldingErnie)