Winds of up to 90mph have sparked chaos across the Fylde coast, damaging buildings and bringing havoc to the roads.
Beach House, next to Festival House, on Blackpool Promenade, and the Sheraton Hotel, in North Shore, were both badly damaged as winds escalated amid a “red” weather warning on Wednesday night.
And council bosses closed down main roads across Blackpool, including Yeadon Way, the Promenade, Bank Hey Street, Lytham Road and Dickson Road.
Trains and two flights in and out of Blackpool Airport also had to be cancelled while almost 300 homes in Garstang were left without power.
Trams also stopped running during the strongest winds while Blackpool Transport bosses were forced to suspend bus services.
The town hall said it was reacting to incidents as soon as possible and was advising all residents to stay indoors.
Firefighters across the region were called more than 50 times for incidents around Lancashire.
By 7.30pm brigades were attending 30 calls in the region, mostly on the coast.
Fylde coast commuters travelling north on the West Coast Main Line from Preston Station were warned to expect significant delays as strong winds are expected to batter the region.
The route to Penrith was closed between 7pm and 9pm.
Blackpool Airport also cancelled two flights – Citywing’s flight V9116, which was due to land at the airport from the Isle of Man at 4.40pm was cancelled along with the V9117 flight to Belfast.
As winds got worse on Wednesday night both trams and buses in Blackpool town centre were suspended.
The Met Office said in Blackpool gusts reached storm force strength, although the weather was expected to calm overnight.
Winds are expected to remain strong on Thursday, though gusts could only reach 50mph.
There will be blustery showers throughout the day.
For full coverage of the chaos and more pictures, see Thursday’s Blackpool Gazette
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