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Thousands without power after storms

Thousands of people were still without electricity last night after storms lashed Scotland.

Power lines were brought down and trees uprooted yesterday as winds reached almost 112km/h. Gusts of more than 72km/h buffeted the country on Tuesday.

A 36-year-old man died after a tree fell on his car in Balloch, West Dunbartonshire.

A man also had to be cut free by firefighters after the lorry he was in overturned in high winds on the Isle of Harris.

The accident took place at around midday on the A859, 16km south of Tarbert.

The man was taken by a Stornoway Coastguard helicopter to Western Isles Hospital where his condition is understood to be serious but stable.

Despite the work of more than 1,000 engineers, at least 12,000 properties were still without power this afternoon.

A spokeswoman for Scottish Hydro Power Distribution said around 10,000 customers in Scotland were still without power supplies, down from 20,000 this morning.

The spokeswoman said: “Staff will continue to work into the night. We are confident the vast majority will be back on this evening but around 3,000 could be without power overnight, mostly in the Tayside area and in Argyll.”

A spokesman for ScottishPower said 2,000 were off supply at 4.30pm on Tuesday, compared to 5,000 in the morning.

He said: “We expect to have the vast majority of those 2,000 back on by this evening. One of the complications is that we have not been able to fly helicopters due to the ash cloud. This has stopped us getting access to certain areas and completing visual inspections.

“Unfortunately there will be a few hundred off overnight in Fife, Lanarkshire and Stirlingshire but we are trying to keep that number as low as possible.”

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