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Scheduled ferry services are suspended in the Western Isles this morning (Thursday 29 February) with strong south westerly winds creating sea swell and spray.

CalMac says sailings are expected to begin returning to timetable this afternoon, as the wind speeds drop.

Expected to operate to timetable are this afternoon’s 2pm sailing from Stornoway, a departure from Oban to Castlebay at 12.10pm – with an extended passage time due to the conditions – and a departure from Uig at 3pm for service to Lochmaddy and Tarbert.

A review on the suspended Sound of Barra service was expected at around 11am today and passage conditions have been reviewed on the Sound of Harris, with the first service from Berneray now expected to be at 12.10pm.

As well as the wild weather, there’s an additional challenge for residents of the Laxdale and Laxdale Lane areas north of Stornoway, where scheduled maintenance work on the power network means residents of 163 properties are without electricity.

Network company SSEN said work is in progress and power should be restored to all customers by 4pm.