Barometer: Storm waves? It could be three times worse

Plus: Who goes to A&E, and how much pollution is really stopped by driving at 60mph

11 January 2014

9:00 AM

11 January 2014

9:00 AM

The test of a wave

Waves measuring 27ft from peak to trough were seen off Land’s End as the stormy weather continued. How do these compare with the highest waves ever measured?

— Waves of 67ft were measured by a buoy off the coast of Donegal in December 2011, the highest found around the British Isles.
— The highest wave yet recorded during a storm was one of 91ft during Hurricane Ivan in August 2005.
— A landslip in Lituya Bay, Alaska, on 9 July 1958 created a local tsunami which tore down trees 200ft above sea level. Water directly opposite the landslip site splashed to a height of 1,720ft, tearing down trees even at that height.

Comparison shopping

Retailers have begun to publish their sales figures for the pre-Christmas period. Where are we spending more, and where less?

Type of shop Annual change in spending to end of November
Predominantly food +2.9%
Household goods -3%
Petrol stations -4%
Internet and mail order +14.1%

Source: ONS

The young and the reckless

Some patients are turning up at Accident and Emergency 50 times a year, it was revealed. Who attends A&E?

Age group % of A&E visitors
0–9 14%
10–19 13%
20–29 16%
30–39 12%
40–49 12%
50–59 9%
60–69 8%
70–79 7%
80+ 8%
Age unrecorded 1%
51% were male, 48% female, with 1% whose sex went unrecorded

Source: Health and Social Care Information Centre

Quick and dirty

A stretch of the M1 near Rotherham is to have a 60mph speed limit to cut pollution. How much more pollution does a car emit at 110kph (69mph) than 100kph (62mph)?

Carbon monoxide +40%
Hydrocarbons +11%
Nitrous oxides -5%
Carbon monoxide -7%
Hydrocarbons -2%
Nitrous oxides +20%
PM (soot) particles +7%

Source: European Environment Agency

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