Ferries cancelled for second night and several schools closed as high winds persist

With the high winds that hit Shetland overnight due to persist, NorthLink has decided to cancel north and southbound ferry sailings for the second time in 24 hours today.

The Hjaltland will remain berthed in Lerwick and the Hrossey in Aberdeen until tomorrow night when services are due to resume.

Meanwhile several schools in the north and west will not open today: Aith Junior High School, Sandness Prmiary, Happyhansel Primary, Skeld Primary, Olnafirth Primary, Mossbank Primary, Urafirth Primary.

A raft of schools are to shut at lunchtime. The primaries at Cunningsburgh, Dunrossness, Hamnavoe, Sandwick, Scalloway, Tingwall, Uyeasound and Whiteness are shutting at 1.30pm, while secondary pupils at Sandwick will go home at 2pm. Brae Junior High School will close early too – at 1pm for primary pupils and 1.30pm for secondary pupils.

The schools service said no blanket closure would be introduced, the decision on whether to close being left to individual head teachers.

Sumburgh Airport is operating with some delays and disruptions – the flight to Kirkwall and Inverness was cancelling this morning. Airport manager Nigel Flaws said it was difficult to give guidance as staff only knew what was happening half an hour in advance. “We’ve had three flights in now, [but] it’s difficult because the programme has been knocked squint, so it’s all over the shop,” he said.

Most of the SIC’s inter-island ferries have been cancelled due to the strong winds – ferries between the Mainland and Yell, Skerries, Whalsay and Papa Stour have been cancelled, as has the route from Yell to Unst. The Bressay route is still operating but passengers are warned to expect delays.

As of 9am on Friday, Scottish Hydroelectric said there were five major faults affecting around 100 customers in total. A company spokesman said engineers had been working since 6am this morning to carry out repairs and get supplies restored.


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