Former ITV weather presenter Sian Lloyd has apologised for describing a traffic jam as a “holocaust”.
The 61-year-old Welsh TV presenter was complaining about the traffic congestion around Swansea and insisted she had not meant to use the word in reference to the historical Holocaust, which saw the murder of 6 million Jews by Nazi Germany between 1941 and 1945.
Lloyd wrote in a tweet that has now been deleted: "Yet another traffic holocaust in Swansea today. Probs the worst ever. Over 1 HOUR to get to the Village Hotel from Mumbles. Took sis 1 hr 40 mins to Neath earlier. Everything is wrong about traffic management in Swansea."
In response to a furious backlash she took down the post and apologised.
Lloyd said: “Hey guys, it’s the noun with a small h. I’m half Jewish myself. Would never want to cause offence. Huge apology if I did.”
She added: “I so did not mean it in the historical way, with the big H. Big sorry if it caused offence. Obvs the wrong word to use. So sorry.”
Sincere apologies. Not meant in that way at all. I was using the noun with a small h, which is a bona fida word, and certainly not referencing the historical event. Clearly a bad choice of words. Very stupid of me, esp since I am half Jewish
— Siân Lloyd (@SianWeather) November 18, 2019
Lloyd admitted she had made a “big mistake” and added: “It was a stupid description. I am mortified and never intended to refer to the actual Holocaust. How naive am I.”
The dictionary definition of “holocaust” is: "A very large amount of destruction, especially by fire or heat, or the killing of very large numbers of people."
Twitter users called the comment “vile”, “disgusting” and “incredibly stupid”.
Absolutely disgusting comparing a traffic jam to a holocaust.
Nobody hates traffic more than me, my commute is often 3+ hours a day, but I would never utter such a heinous comment. You should be ashamed!
— 𝖍 𝖆 𝖓 𝖓 𝖆 𝖍 🍂 (@xsuperhan) November 18, 2019
It's a bit of traffic ffs. Comparing it to the holocaust is incredibly stupid. https://t.co/MdeiPRbFKh
— Paul Jones (@PaulPauljones79) November 18, 2019
What an absolutely vile comment to make.
— Steven Bowen-Wilkie (@BowenWilkie) November 18, 2019
Lloyd, who is originally from Maesteg, near Swansea, said she was on her way to her mother’s funeral when she made the blunder.
Hi Rob, my mother’s funeral was today so you can appreciate that I’m at home with my close family and not able to deal with other things
— Siân Lloyd (@SianWeather) November 19, 2019
Lloyd has appeared on reality TV shows I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! and Celebrity First Dates and was once engaged to former Liberal Democrat MP Lembit Opik.