Cornwall beach tragedy as holidaymaker dies in Storm Ellen danger

A holidaymaker has died after getting into difficulty in the sea off the Cornish coast as emergency services warn of the dangers of strong winds which are battering parts of the UK.

The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning of wind for all of England, Wales and parts of Scotland on Friday, bringing the potential for travel disruption and large waves in coastal areas.

Winds of 45 to 50mph are forecast for inland areas, reaching up to 60mph around coasts and hills.

It comes after gusts of up to 70mph were expected to batter coastal areas on Thursday night, with the strongest winds forecast in the south-west of England and west of Wales.

Devon and Cornwall Police said a man, who was in his 50s and from the London area, was pulled from the water near Helston on Thursday afternoon but was confirmed dead shortly afterwards.

A teenage boy, who is related to the man, is in a stable condition in hospital in Truro following the incident at Church Cove in Gunwalloe, the force added.



HM Coastguard is urging members of the public to keep their distance from the waves, while the RNLI advised visiting lifeguarded beaches whenever possible and to avoid storm watching if swells become high.

“The combination of winds, tides and swells is going to make for dangerous conditions that could put you into difficulty very quickly,” the RNLI tweeted on Friday.

Stormy conditions bring a risk of coastal surges and flooding in communities close to the sea, Devon and Cornwall Police warned.

Waves up to 9ft (2.7m) high are being predicted and, together with strong winds, could create dangerous seas and strong rip currents.

Some 10 flood warnings were in place across parts of the UK on Friday afternoon – meaning flooding is expected – while the Environment Agency issued a further 35 flood alerts for swathes of the south-west.

The Met Office said strong winds could lead to some delays to road, rail, air and ferry transport and possibly some temporary power disruption.

Meteorologist Emma Salter said it was “unusual” to have such stormy weather this time of year and emphasised its warnings were issued based on the potential impact of conditions.

She said: “If we had this set-up say in January or February we probably wouldn’t be issuing a warning, because 40, 50, 60mphs on the coast isn’t going to do much damage.”

But she added: “This time of year, when the trees are in full leaf they can be uprooted a lot more easily.”

Ms Salter continued: “Corona aside, there’s a lot of holidaymakers out, people in tents, it’s the weekend, there’s going to be a lot of traffic on the road, a lot of people camping… that’s why we’ve got the warning out.”

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