Storm Imogen Follows Floods in South-West England

The United Kingdom’s Met Office is just down the road from here in Exeter, and they have just announced that the newly named “Storm Imogen” is heading our way:

Imogen follows in the footsteps of her brother Henry further north and the unnamed storm that has just deposited 57.8 mm of rain on Okehampton in 24 hours:

whilst Exeter Airport endured gusts of wind up to 50 mph and a mere 21.0 mm of rainfall:

We have previously speculated about the effects of such storms on Western Power Distribution’s network in the South-West Peninsula, so here is how things look qualitatively at the moment, following today’s flooding:

and here’s the associated quantities

Here’s how Haldon Hill has been preconditioned for Imogen’s imminent arrival:

and here is the Met Office’s forecast [updated Sunday AM] for our back yard on Monday:

Do you suppose there will be another power cut here tomorrow?

11 thoughts on “Storm Imogen Follows Floods in South-West England

  1. I got on my bike in advance of Storm Imogen and cycled around the Haldon Hills doing a spot check on the local infrastructure. Look at one of the things I discovered!

    Some valiant Western Power Distribution engineers are fixing a big problem even as we speak. It seems that even though it’s not shown on WPD’s main power cut map:

    if you know the right postcode you can discover this:

    Currently there are 5 WPD diesel generators located along the Haldon ridge, supplying power to (amongst other things) the giant telecoms mast near Haldon Racecourse:

    I suppose technically that doesn’t count as a power cut, even though the power in question isn’t arriving at its destination from some far off power station via WPD’s distribution grid?

    N.B. Storm Imogen hasn’t hit South-West England just yet.

  2. We had our first blast of lightning then thunder a few minutes ago. Our lights are still on though! Whilst we wait for Imogen’s full fury to reach us, here’s a “true colour” image of her recorded by the Suomi satellite earlier today:

    Here also is Western Power Distribution’s current power cut map:

    and the associated summary information:

  3. Lunchtime is approaching, and here is WPD’s power cut map once again. Cornwall in particular is rapidly disappearing under a sea of green:

    Here’s their summary by region:

    The full breakdown of properties without power by county reveals:

    Cornwall 4868
    Devon 2518
    Somerset 95

    with increasing numbers in South Wales & Gloucestershire (which counts as “West Midlands” as far as WPD are concerned).

    Meanwhile, here is what an “Everything Everywhere” network status check for Great Haldon currently reveals:

  4. Here’s another image of Imogen from above, this time from the Terra satellite earlier today. Her centre isn’t as well defined as yesterday, but the swathe of cloud across the Western British Isles is clear enough:

    Meanwhile down here on Planet Earth the count of WPD customers without electricity is rapidly approaching 20,000. These are from an hour ago:

  5. Western Power Distribution’s corporate communications team tell me they will be issuing a press release tomorrow morning detailing the total number of power cuts they have repaired over the last 24 hours. In the meantime it is evident from their map and summary that as Storm Imogen heads across the North Sea the lights in South-West England are coming back on again rapidly:

    The proportion of wind generation in the National Grid mix has increased over the last few hours, and is now around 14%:

  6. The morning after the night before it is evident that the north coast of South-West England bore the brunt of Imogen’s wrath:

    It looks as though some of the coastal faults are taking the longest time to fix, and there are currently just over 1500 properties left without power:

    Wind powered electricity generation across the UK has fallen considerably overnight:

  7. Perhaps surprisingly, the number of power cuts reported by Western Power Distribution’s online map has increased over the last couple of hours:

    This is pure conjecture on my part, but possibly this is due to people waking up to discover their power is off and reporting the fact to WPD and/or WPD being forced to temporarily isolate parts of their network in order to repair it.

  8. In a press release earlier this evening WPD said that:

    Strong winds and torrential rainfall battered the South West of England and South Wales on Monday causing disruption to power supplies as Storm Imogen brought in winds of up to 90mph.

    We dealt with 1,400 incidents and restored power to over 93,000 properties in the 24 hours from Monday morning.

    There are now a lot less green pushpins on their power cut than there were this morning:

    and their summary reveals only 813 properties currently without power across South-West England:

    On my cycling tour around post Imogen Great Haldon this afternoon I discovered that more trees had fallen close the Arqiva telecoms tower that suffered a power cut at the weekend:

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