North Devon is bracing for a battering and a deluge as Storm Alex brings strong winds and heavy rain across the region throughout the weekend.
Rain is expected to be heavy and persistent throughout today (Friday, October 2) with some areas of the South West set to receive as much as 40-50 millimetres.
But there is more to come, with yellow bordering on amber warnings for Saturday and Sunday, with disruption from flooding possible, as well as fallen trees and flooded roads.
The north east wind is forecast to strengthen through Friday, with the Met Office warning some exposed coastal areas in Devon and Cornwall could see gusts of up to 60-65mph.
Devon County Council has said there is the potential for up to 100mm of rain during the weekend.
People have been urged to take extra care if travelling and be alert for disruption such as fallen trees or flooded roads.
Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Highway Management, said: “While it’s not unusual for us to get these conditions at this time of year, this is the first autumn storm of the season and after such a relatively quiet spell, the forecast storm and weather warnings could take some people by surprise.
“It’s impossible to predict the impact of any storm but with trees losing their leaves in the strong winds, there’s a chance that drains could get blocked which could lead to surface water flooding.
“Please take extra care when out on the county’s roads.”
LIVE: North Devon incidents
4.15pm: Near Ilfracombe on the A361 between Mullacott Cross and Kingsley Avenue there are reports of a fallen tree.
Now clear – A361 North Devon Link Road block both ways at Bolham near Tiverton due to a three vehicle collision. Queuing traffic. Police report it appears to be minor injuries only.
11.30am: Reports of tree down between South Molton roundabout and Brayford
11am: Fallen tree blocking the road at the A39 Watersmeet Road near Lynmouth.
10am: B3137 near Meshaw blocked due to fallen tree near the Creacombe turn off. Traffic is coping well.
Check back for more updates as we have them.
Devon County Council is advising people to:
• Avoid overnight travel unless absolutely essential as roads will always be more hazardous at night with poorer visibility;
• Be alert to fallen trees and branches, particularly on minor roads where they may not have been reported;
• When the wind is at its peak, consider if your journey is really necessary, and be alert to weather warnings;
• Never drive through floodwater or swollen flowing water, you don’t know how deep it is. Find an alternative route;
• Allow additional time for your journey;
• Reduce your speed and leave more space between you and the vehicle in front;
• Drive with care and according to the conditions.
For more information and travel advice from Devon County Council visit www.devon.gov.uk/winter_travel or for updates on Twitter follow @DevonAlert