Image: Blowing sand on beach
Chris Ison  /  AP
A family shields itself from blowing sand near Poole, England, on Saturday.
updated 11/14/2009 12:42:54 PM ET 2009-11-14T17:42:54

Heavy rain and winds of up to 100 miles an hour are causing flooding, closing roads and disrupting transport across southern Britain.

The country's worst storm this year triggered flash floods in coastal regions. Scores of motorists had to be rescued from their cars, and in several areas trees toppled onto cars and power lines.

A gust of 100 mph was recorded Saturday at Needles, on the Isle of Wight, and 60 houses were damaged by a tornado in the town of Benfleet, east of London.

The wild weather prompted authorities in London to cancel a fireworks display scheduled for the Lord Mayor's Show, an annual parade of pageantry.

Ferries between England and France were canceled because of high winds, and three oil rig workers were rescued by a lifeboat after their supply boat ran aground at Ness Point, Britain's most easterly point.

There were no reported deaths.

Weather forecasters said conditions should be calmer Sunday.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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