Re: Tidal Threat on British East Coast
A storm in the North Sea has left Britain and the Netherlands facing the worst flood threat in decades with tidal surges predicted early on Friday.
Flood defences have been put on alert on the entire Dutch coast and flood warnings are in place for the eastern and northern coasts of Britain.
A tidal wave in 1953 killed more than 2,000 people in both countries.
Oil platforms have been closed off the Norwegian coast and gales are expected in Germany and Denmark.
The Dutch transport ministry said this was the first time since 1976 the whole North Sea coast was under alert.
Maritime traffic in Rotterdam was halted, as the authorities closed the giant Maeslant barrier that guards entrance to the largest port in Europe for the first time since its construction in the 1990s.
It took half-an-hour for the two doors of the barrier across the Nieuwe Waterweg to meet, spanning a channel 360 metres wide.
Rotterdam will remain closed until 1700GMT on Friday, a port spokesman said.
One-third of the land mass of the Netherlands is under sea level.
In Britain, the Thames River and Dartford Creek barriers are being shut as waters are forecast to surge 1.5 metres (5 feet) above normal sea levels.
Families along the Norfolk coast have been protecting their homes
UK government warned large areas of Norfolk and Kent coasts were at risk of severe flooding and the Met Office warned of gusts of up to 145km/h (90mph) for the Orkney and Shetland islands in Scotland.
The storm surge is expected to peak around dawn on Friday, and several hundred people have left their homes near Great Yarmouth in Norfolk.
Severe gale warnings were issued in Germany and Denmark, with wind gusts of up to 125km/h (80mph) expected.
In Germany, regions around the Elbe and Elm rivers were under flood warnings.
The North Sea storm affected oil industry in Norway, the fifth largest exporter of crude in the world, with the closure of oil platforms off its coast.
Krajicek Bertens Wickmayer Jankovic Kerber Svitolina Hogenkamp de Vroome Flipkens Kerkhove Burger Rus Rezai Bacsinszky / Lena D. missing you