Storm Eunice: Falling buildings, stranded ships, crazy swimmers … and a happy seal
If online journalism and digital analytics have taught us anything, it’s that’s readers can’t get enough of the weather — especially when the weather goes wild.
To that end, the arrival of Storm Eunice yesterday, was always going to be *the* story of the day.
We took a look at NewsWhip’s data to see which stories about Storm Eunice from the regional press attracted the most attention online.
Hyperlocal website Island Echo scored the third most social weather story of the day, with news that wind speeds had hit 125mph, the strongest ever, on the Isle of Wight. The Isle of Wight County Press also covered the story .
Ian Carter, editorial director at Iliffe Media, said: “I’ve seen some fantastic coverage of #StormEunice across our websites today — and indeed across the whole of the regional press. Well over 110,000 readers on @Kent_Online alone. Maybe some of those quick to criticise our sector and our journalists will remember that in future.”
KentOnline’s photos of a power station’s towers toppling due to high winds also attracted a lot of interest.
News of a lion enclosure being destroyed by Storm Eunice, from the Eastern Daily Press, was next, followed by KentLive’s coverage in the South East when a rare red weather warning for the region.
Details of the O2 arena’s roof being ripped off — perhaps one of the most dramatic moments captured yesterday — attracted a lot of interest for the Evening Standard, while one of the more peculiar side effects of the storm — windows being covered by dirt — was a talking point in Cornwall.
Elsewhere, the Southern Daily Echo reported on a roof being blown off a house, while in Portsmouth, the News reported on how shoppers had a near miss after a large sign fell into the street from a bingo hall. In Bournemouth, falling roof from a hotel left a man injured, the Echo said, while in Cambridge, CambridgeshireLive reported on a dog walker trapped under a tree.
“The St Faith crew have been giving refreshments to customers — for those who can still stomach them amid the conditions in the eastern Solent — force 11, gusting 12,” the Press told readers.
For some people, it was impossible to get too close to the storm. Still in Portsmouth, the News reported on thrill-seekers back-flipping into the sea. In Devon, DevonLive shared a warning from authorities after surfers were spotted in the sea. In Liverpool, the Echo reported on coastguards ordering swimmers out of surging seas.
Further north, the problem wasn’t just the wind — but snow too. The Press and Journal in Aberdeen reported on the conditions drivers were facing.
We all know aeroplanes were a hot topic yesterday, as seen with the success of BigJetTV — and they proved to be popular on local news sites too. EdinburghLive reported on a plane ‘pulling a mid-air U-turn’ after things became too windy in London. BelfastLive reported on a plane which ended up landing in the wrong country as a result of the storm. BristolLive reported on a flight aborting its landing twice due to the weather before later revealing how passengers had formed an ‘angry mob’ at the airport.
And perhaps proving there is almost no story which can’t involve an animal in some way or another, we finish with PlymouthLive. One of its most popular storm stories was Spearmint the seal enjoying the waves in the Ocean City. While in Essex, the Echo reported on the safe return of a pet owl which went missing after its aviary was destroyed.
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