Tornado set to rip over Coronation Street

The current ridge of high pressure over the British Isles is set to be fully exploited by Coronation Street staff writers this week, with a tornado tearing up the cobbles. It's not the first time a soap has used natural disasters or accidents to write out, axe or introduce characters. The last major incident to occur on Corrie was the tram accident that killed off Ashley and Molly. That storyline featured a live episode to mark the soap's fiftieth anniversary.

According to insiders, a new family of five characters will be blown onto the cobbles when their car is whipped up into the weather phenonenon in Kent. The family patriarch - grandfather Jerrick Jeffers - will die on arrival, but the rest of the family will find solace in the ale at the Rover's. A brash bad boy - Chase Tyler - is also set to move onto the street as the love interest of newcomer Odessa Jeffers.

The foundations of the house in which Chase lives are shifted by the tornado, and he finds himself living on a corner of the far more famous street, gaining immediate entry onto the soap. As he flees the house during the Weatherfield phenomenon, Chase is struck and temporarily knocked unconscious by a shipment of very high grade cocaine in a metal suitcase, which has also blown onto the street.

Also arriving on the scene is a stray dog, which licks the life back into Chase Tyler. The dog will be re-homed thanks to a local dog trust and Maria Connor - who will call on all of her expertise in kennels to make sure the feisty little terrier finds a new family - while also balancing a hectic salon-managing schedule, with a shop front window replacement that turns fruity, and persisting question marks over her boyfriend's sexual orientation.

The new cast members are the first to have a contractual ban imposed on them preventing them from appearing on news documentaries and exposés.