Met Office extends weather warnings for snow and wind in the wake of Storm Ciara; ScotRail cancels Kyle Line services between Inverness and Kyle of Lochalsh; CalMac warns of possible disruption on its Ullapool-Stornoway ferry; and Scottish and Southern Energy Networks engineers were dealing with power cuts in Coigach and in Beauly
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FURTHER weather disruption is expected on Monday after the Met Office issued further extended its yellow warnings in the wake of Storm Ciara.
The storm brought torrential rain and strong winds to many parts of the Highlands on Sunday, prompting rail and ferry cancellations and disruption on the region’s roads.
A yellow weather warning for snow and wind remained in force across Ross-shire and the wider Highlands on Monday morning - and the alerts have since been extended into Wednesday.
The current snow and ice warning is expected to remain in place until 11.59pm on Tuesday, and will immediately be followed by a separate warning for ice and snow which will run until midday on Wednesday.
Monday’s warning was issued amid forecasts for wind gusts of between 50 and 60mph across the Highlands. Some 1-3cm of snow is also predicted on land above 150 metres, and 5-10cm on terrain above 300 metres. Local snowfall of up to 20cm is also possible in places.
“Heavy snow and strong winds will combine to lead to disruption to travel, especially over higher routes,” said a Met Office spokesman, who warned that there could be power cuts in some locations, and “possible travel delays or cancellations” for road, rail and air travel.
In response to the warning, ScotRail has cancelled trains on the Kyle of Lochalsh line on Monday morning - after doing likewise for Sunday services on the route. They are expected to inspect the line on Monday ahead of a possible restoration of services this afternoon - although rail passengers should check the ScotRail website for the latest updates before heading out.
“Due to the extreme (80+ mph) winds that have been forecast affecting this line, we've taken the decision to cancel services on Sunday and Monday in order to keep our customers and staff safe,” said a ScotRail spokesman.
“Once the storm passes, both routes will be inspected using locomotives before they reopen for passenger services, it'll be carried out from first light, and if everything's OK, we'll restore train services from around 12pm/lunchtime on Monday.
“Customers who have already purchased their tickets for all or part of their journey on the routes above that are dated Sunday or Monday can use their tickets up to and including Wednesday.”
At sea, CalMac has warned passengers on the Ullapool-Stornoway service that “sailings are liable to disruption or cancellation at short notice” and has urged people to check its website for the latest updates before travelling.
Further disruption is also possible on Tuesday.
Elsewhere, there were also further power cuts in parts of the Highlands on Monday morning.
Some areas of Coigach lost power at around 7am on Monday.
At the time of writing Scottish and Southern Energy Networks said it hoped to have power restored by midday.
Parts of Beauly were also reporting power outages. Two of the village’s postcode areas lost power shortly after 11am and engineers said they hoped to restore power by 11am.
Sepa also had several flood alerts and warnings in place in parts of Easter and Wester Ross.