Storm Arwen: Moment pub worker cheats death as tree crashes through roof just inches from where she is smoking

A PUB worker claims a cigarette "saved her life" after a tree CRASHED through a roof inches from where she was smoking.

Cheryl Pound, 55, took her cigarette break just after 1.30am today outside The Star pub in Bidgend, Wales, while chaotic 98mph Storm Arwen raged on around her.

Minutes later, a blustering gale sent a tree toppling down yards away from where unassuming Cheryl was standing after the pub shut and punters cleared out.

CCTV captured the staff member peeking around the corner as she heard the crack of the tree trunk snapping in two.

In a matter of seconds, the tree crashed to the floor as terrified Cheryl cowered towards a wall.

She told Wales Online: "That cigarette saved my life.

"I'm not superstitious at all. But there must be something up there. I think if I wasn't under the shelter I would definitely be dead.

"We'd been serving behind the bar all night and it was windy but I wasn't really concerned.

"I was just having a cigarette and I heard a crack. I honestly thought someone had jumped the wall.

"As you can see in the footage, I went to walk out of the shelter and I don't know why but something told me to step back.

"The next thing I knew the tree just came down."

Four tables were broken with the impact of the tree – which is still being cleared away by professionals.

It comes after a third person was crushed to death by a tree and 140,000 homes were left without power as Storm Arwen swept in.

A 35-year-old driver was killed when the tree fell on his car on the B977 in Aberdeenshire around 5.45pm yesterday.

Shortly after cops arrived at the scene, their police van was almost torn in two by another falling tree – as the devastating storm raged on, cutting off power for thousands.

Luckily, no officers were hurt in the incident near Hatton-of-Fintray, Aberdeenshire.

Police Scotland confirmed a driver – who has not been named – was "fatally injured when a vehicle was struck by a falling tree".

He died at the scene shortly before 6pm.

It marks Storm Arwen's third casualty, after head teacher and dad-of-four Francis Lagan was killed when a tree fell on his car in Antrim, Northern Ireland, yesterday.

And a second man – who has also not been named -was crushed by a falling tree in Ambleside, Cumbria, last night.

The storm has brought 33ft waves, plunging temperatures and blizzards to much of the UK.

In Brizlee Wood, Northumberland, windspeeds hit a massive 98mph – followed closely by Berry Head, Devon, where 92mph gusts were recorded.

In Orlock Head, County Down, winds of 87mph were noted. Meanwhile, speeds hit 81mph in Aberporth, Dyfed, and 79mph in The Needles on the Isle of Wight.

The mercury plunged to -5C in Scotland as the bone-shaking chill took over this morning – with -3C temps recorded in parts of the midlands.

A 35-year-old driver was killed when the tree fell on his car on the B977 in Aberdeenshire around 5.45pm yesterday.

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