Storm upgraded to Code Red for Northern Netherlands

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The KNMI has issued a Code Red weather warning for people living in the north of the Netherlands. The official meteorologists of the Netherlands issued their strong prediction for Friesland, Groningen, IJsselmeer, Noord Holland and the Wadden Sea area, saying that they expect the storm to start taking hold around noon today.

Flags flapping in the wind in Amsterdam Centrum, 5 Dec. 2013 (Zack Newmark/NL Times)

Strong gales of up to 88 km/h (54 mph) were reported in IJmuiden and Vlieland as early as 10:30am. The winds register at force nine on the Beaufort scale. Drenthe, Flevoland and Zuid Holland are under a Code Orange, while the rest of the Netherlands is in Code Yellow.

"There is a high risk of falling trees. Even tree branches, roof tiles, roofing and cladding can come loose and fly around," the KNMI said in issuing the warning. "Further, large objects can fall, such as scaffolding and cranes. Vulnerable traffic and pedestrians are at high risk."

Winds are expected to hit force 11, or up to 117 km/h (73 mph).

The warning is not expected to be cancelled until about 18:00. Code Red is the strongest possible caution that KNMI can issue.

The storm is also expected to wreak havoc in Denmark, Germany and Poland.