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‘Don’t Travel Unless You Have To’

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Roof which blew off a house in Robert Street, Milford Haven, Wednesday.

Roof which blew off a house in Robert Street, Milford Haven, Wednesday.

PEMBROKESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL has urged residents not to travel unless they have to as strong winds are causing chaos across the county.

Roads, schools and businesses were all forced to close as winds hit speeds of nearly 100mph and a Red weather warning was issued by the Met Office.

Pedestrians and motorists in Pembrokeshire are being urged to take extreme care when approaching buildings and trees, in today’s very severe weather conditions. There is a great risk of falling debris from buildings and trees, with the very strong winds in the county today, which are forecast to persist well into this evening.

Winds of 93.6 mph have already been recorded on the Cleddau Bridge and there are Hurricane Force 12 winds off the Pembrokeshire coast.

Tree down at St Giles church in Letterston. Blocking road at present. Picture by Karl Hedley.

Tree down at St Giles church in Letterston. Blocking road at present. Picture by Karl Hedley.

“The message is –don’t travel or walk unless you really, really have to,” said Darren Thomas, Head of Highways at Pembrokeshire County Council.

“Also, if you are travelling with caravans or mobile homes, it would be sensible to seek a sheltered location for these until the winds have died down”.

A number of schools were closed including Portfield School in Haverfordwest, Manorbier School, Ysgol y Preseli and Ysgol y Frenni in Crymych. Ysgol Geryllan, Letterston, Solva Primary School was closed after the roof was damaged, Ysgol Glannau Gwaun, Cosheston VC,  Coastlands School / Ysgol y Glannau in St Ishmael`s, Greenhill School in Tenby and Cleddau Reach Primary School also closed.

Pembrokeshire College also closed just after mid-day as a result of the weather.

Many houses are also without power.

Members of Pembrokeshire County Council staff were on standby at Newgale where there are already considerable waves and extremely high winds. The road at the seafront is closed to high sided vehicles with further assessment for full closure nearer high tide (which is at approx 5.30pm).

Although Council staff were unable to attend to fallen trees until the wind dropped to safe working levels, they are attending to close roads where necessary.

A door was been blown off a service bus on an exposed road at Penycwm on the A487. No-one is injured and a relief bus is en-route.

Tree down in St Giles church grounds, roots showing. Picture by Ben Franklin

Tree down in St Giles church grounds, roots showing. Picture by Ben Franklin

The Cleddau Bridge was also closed to all traffic.

Middle Street in Rosemarket was partially blocked due to fallen tree at West Street.

New Road partially blocked due to fallen tree at West Hook Road / Lower Quay Road.

There were Several fallen trees in the road at Llangwm. The road is closed between Llangwm and Trooper’s Inn – and is likely to remain closed for the majority of the day.

Road between Rosemarket & Burton was closed due to shed debris.

The Main Road by the Church in Letterston was also blocked and there was a tree down between Jefferyston and Creselly.

Whitland fire brigade had to attend Llandewi Velfrey Service Station as there were concerns that the forecourt roof could blow off so equipment was put up to keep it in place.

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Stand up for slowing down speed campaign launched

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INAPPROPRIATE speed contributes to around 11% of all injury collisions reported to the police, with 15% of collisions resulting in a serious injury and 24% of collisions resulting in fatalities.

Starting on the 26th July, the National Police Chief Council (NPCC) Speed Campaign will kick off across the UK, with GoSafe and the four Welsh Police Forces participating in both engaging with the public about the risks of speeding and enforcing the speed limits on the roads of Wales.

In 2019, 60,073 Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) were issued in Wales to drivers/riders for speeding.

Speeding is a major contributing factor to collisions on the roads of Wales. This includes both ‘excessive speed’, where the speed limit is exceeded, as well as driving or riding within the speed limit when this is too fast for the conditions at the time; for example, in poor weather, poor visibility or high pedestrian activity.

During the Coronavirus pandemic, we saw less traffic but higher speeds.  Now our restrictions are lifting, traffic volumes are up and as we are holidaying in the UK more, we are seeing more people speeding on the roads in Wales.  We want to change this, but can only do that with your help.

 Over the next few weeks you will see an increased presence on the road network of Wales as we aim to keep all road users safe and reduce the number of people killed or seriously injured on our roads.

 We know that the majority of road users comply with the speed limit; but the minority of those who do not increases the risk to the safety of all road users and need to be educated on the risks to their own safety as well as to the safety of those around them. Throughout this campaign, GoSafe and our partners in the Police and Local Authorities will encourage and educate more people to reduce their speed to save lives.

Teresa Ciano, GoSafe Partnership Manager said: “GoSafe enforce at sites across Wales in order to encourage motorists to comply with the speed limits and in turn make our roads and communities safer for everyone. If we all play our part and stand up for slowing down we can make a difference, and we can save lives on the roads of Wales.”

Lee Waters MS, Deputy Minister for Climate Change said: “I am very pleased to support this campaign. Driving at high speeds costs lives and a greater police presence on our roads will mean motorists will be more likely to drive within the speed limits, protecting lives and avoiding a speeding fine.”

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Cardigan man accused of murder in court

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John Williams Bell was found murdered in Cardigan

A CARDIGAN man who is accused of stabbing a man to death has appeared in court today (Jul 28).

Ashley Keegan, 22, of Golwyg y Castell, Cardigan, appeared before court via video link where he spoke only to confirm his name and date of birth.

Swansea crown court heard how Keegan is accused of stabbing 37-year-old John Williams Bell seven times in the back.

Mr Bell’s body was discovered in the early hours of Wednesday Morning, July 21, on the road to Cardigan Bridge.

The court set a provisional trial date for January 3, 2022.

Keegan will remain remanded into custody until the trial.

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Suspected drink driver tracked for two miles by police dog

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A SUSPECTED drink driver was arrested after a police dog tracked him for two miles along a cycle path.

Dyfed-Powys Police dog Storm and his handler PC Mike Barnsley located the driver following a collision between Bont and Tregaron on Sunday, July 25.

Officers had attended the scene of the collision, discovering that a car had hit a tree and overturned – however, the driver was not present.

PC Barnsley said: “There were concerns that the driver could have been injured due to the significant damage to the car, so a search was immediately launched to find them.

“With PD Storm, I focussed on the cycle path running alongside the road, where Storm picked up a track and followed it for around two miles.

“Local response units accessed the cycle path ahead of us, while another unit searched from the main road along an unclassified road in the same direction.”

PC Barnsley and Storm reported a sighting of a man on the cycle path, and he was stopped and arrested on suspicion of drink driving.

Sergeant David Hawksworth said: “This was an excellent demonstration of teamwork and coordination by officers, whose good local knowledge resulted in the suspect being swiftly found and arrested.”

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