London’s Heathrow airport flooded with thousands of stranded passengers

Written by By Jacob Blackey, CNN

The first major winter storm of the year broke record-breaking temperatures, snowfall and rain across Britain this weekend, killing at least two people, leaving hundreds of thousands of people without power and disrupting air and road travel.

While many of the 80,000 homes blacked out by the storm at the weekend have now had their power restored, thousands of passengers were stranded in airports across Britain — with national authorities advising passengers to check with individual airlines for details on how to get in contact with them before traveling.

The Storm Gareth storm system brought gale-force winds and heavy rain to much of England and Wales, with gusts of up to 75 mph. Nearly 1.3 million customers were left without power across the UK on Saturday, according to the British government’s National Grid, although some of those power outages have since been restored.

Of those, hundreds of flights were delayed or canceled across Britain, including at London’s Heathrow and Gatwick airports. The bad weather also forced hundreds of motorists to abandon their cars in the northern English city of Leeds.

Accidents involving cars, trucks and heavy traffic on the M1 motorway injured around 12 people on Saturday, although none of the injuries were serious, according to a statement from the Huddersfield police.

“More than 7,000 homes were left without power, while thousands more experienced disruption to their homes’ water supply,” National Grid said in a statement.

“While many of these issues are now resolved, engineers are continuing to work through the night to address others as quickly as possible.”

A small number of people were also reportedly injured by snow falling in the vicinity of Brize Norton, in Oxfordshire, although Thames Valley Police could not confirm whether that was related to the storm.

“Our teams are working hard to clear roads and reconnect households,” said a tweet from the Countryside Agency’s UK Snow Twitter feed.

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