Storm Erik claims first victim following unsafe gales

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Storm Erik is set to batter parts of Britain with 80mph gales and heavy rain forcing meteorologists to issue "danger to life" warnings, with one motorist fighting for their life this morning after a tree fell on their auto.

Met Éireann has declared Storm Erik is to hit Ireland and raised its weather warnings to Status Orange for parts of Ireland.

The Cliffs of Moher have reopened this afternoon, as the strongest winds of Storm Erik have passed here.

The rest of the country will be under a Status Yellow warning from 5am on Friday until 6am on Saturday.

Meanwhile, a second weather warning for strong winds extends over large parts of central and southern Scotland.

Met Éireann said today's gale force winds and severe gusts would gradually ease later in the day.

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Already today one person has died and there have been other serious accidents as trees fell in Storm Erik.

Victoria Jones - PA Images via Getty ImagesA woman battles strong winds on London's Waterloo bridge on Friday.

Police Scotland are also warning motorists to travel with caution and be prepared for hazardous conditions.

High winds that have battered the county for the past two days are set to continue over the weekend and some heavy showers are predicted.

Before then, exposed coasts of Northern Ireland could see gales of 70mph while heavy rain could lead to flooding in Scotland.

Gardaí across Galway and Mayo say while conditions have deteriorated, all routes are passable and there has been no contact from the public in relation to debris or fallen trees on any roads.