Stormy weather has left thousands of homes without power and transport networks in chaos amid battering winds and severe flood warnings.
The Environment Agency has seven severe flood warnings in place - meaning a "danger to life" - covering much of the south coast of England from Cornwall to Dorset.
Western Power Distribution said about 44,000 customers in the South West had been affected by power cuts since yesterday and 5,000 homes remained without power.
In response to the storms, Prime Minister David Cameron is to chair a meeting of Cobra - the civil contingencies committee that leads responses to national crises.
"I'll be chairing a Cobra today to ensure all that can be done is being done over the latest storms, flooding and power cuts," Mr Cameron tweeted.
Weather forecasters MeteoGroup said the strongest gusts overnight were at Berry Head in Devon with speeds hitting 91mph.
The Met Office said yellow warnings of rain were in place for parts of Scotland, the East of England, London and the South East, the South West, Wales and the West Midlands.
"It will continue to be very windy. We can expect to see gusts of 60mph-70mph quite widely across parts of South Wales, Devon and Cornwall, Somerset, Dorset, those sorts of areas," a spokeswoman said.
Rail services across the South West have also been badly disrupted.
In Dawlish, between Exeter and Cornwall, a section of seawall under the coastal railway line collapsed and two people had to be rescued from a car.
First Great Western said all lines between Exeter St Davids and Penzance had been closed but was hopeful services would resume this morning.
Western Power Distribution said winds of up to 80mph had caused "airborne debris" to fly into overhead lines, causing power cuts.
A spokesman said around 200 engineers worked through the night to repair the damage.
Residents were evacuated from 30 flooded houses in Kingsand, Cornwall, and Tamar Coastguard Rescue Team helped rescue "a number of people".
There was further flooding in Looe, where people have been advised to stay away from the seafront amid fears of huge waves.
The bad weather continues hours after the Prince of Wales said the "tragedy" on the flood-hit Somerset Levels is that "nothing happened for so long".
Charles made the remarks as he met farmers, flood victims and emergency services personnel affected by the continuing disaster.
He pledged a £50,000 donation to support flood victims, with the Duke of Westminster matching the funding with an additional £50,000.
Charles's comments came amid growing anger over a perceived lack of Government action to help flood-hit areas on the Levels.
Residents have begged the Environment Agency to start dredging, with many complaining they are living in "third world" conditions with "overflowing" septic tanks.
The prince was recorded by ITV News making the comments during a reception of 80 people in the village of Stoke St Gregory.
"There's nothing like a jolly good disaster to get people to start doing something," the prince said. "The tragedy is that nothing happened for so long."
The Somerset Levels suffered "once in 100 years" flooding in July 2012, but has endured even worse conditions since December.
The prince's reception in Somerset was in stark contrast to that of Environment Secretary Owen Paterson, who drew criticism for arriving at Northmoor last week in a pair of smart city shoes.
Environment Agency boss Lord Smith has also come under fire from some in the area who believe that river dredging by the agency could have reduced the scale of the flooding.
Homes were evacuated on the seafront at Torcross in Devon as the high tide smashed the fronts of four properties.
A spokesman for South Hams District Council said: "Our teams have been down there since early this morning trying to make sure people are safe as possible in the circumstances.
"The properties were evacuated because there was danger from broken glass and further damage caused by the breaking rollers.
"We also have unconfirmed reports that there may be a breach in the sea defences and that the rebuilt road in front of Slapton Ley is threatened. We are awaiting reports back from our engineer at the scene."