Roads Flooded After Heavy Rain
Large parts of England and Wales are on flood alert as forecasters warned that there will be no respite over coming days from the rain.
The Environment Agency said there was a "continued'' risk of surface water flooding from overwhelmed drains across parts of London, East and West Sussex, Surrey and Kent following rainfall of up to 50 millimetres in some areas.
The A27 at Chichester had to be closed for much of the day after becoming submerged. It caused delays of around two hours all afternoon. It's now back open again.
The agency said there are 35 flood alerts across England and Wales, with one flood warning for the River Mole at Charlwood and Hookwood in south east England amid forecasts of further heavy rainfall today.
There will be more rain through central southern parts of England, the Midlands and eastern parts of England on Tuesday.
On Wednesday there will be further showers, the heaviest of which will be across Wales and south west England.
The forecast of further rain comes after parts of Sussex were drenched by between 40 and 48 millimetres of rain overnight, with up to 25 millimetres of rain in parts of London.
The Environment Agency warned people to remain vigilant and check its website and Twitter feed for the latest situation. The agency added that the public was "strongly'' advised to stay away from swollen rivers and not to drive through floodwater.
The warnings of further rain come after residents who were evacuated after floods tore through their homes in Wales continued with the clear-up today.
firefighters in West Sussex receiving more than 80 flood-related calls between 10.30pm yesterday and 3am.
Basement flats in South Terrace on Littlehampton seafront were badly hit, with some properties being flooded up to 4ft (1.2m) deep, West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service said.
A temporary rest centre for people who had been evacuated was set up at Littlehampton Swimming Centre.
A fire service spokesman said: "There are no reports of any injuries, but people are being urged to stay out of floodwater due to the dangers of lifted manhole covers and water contaminated with sewage.''
Elsewhere, police said The A33 at Chineham in Basingstoke could be closed for up to 24 hours after flooding.
Officers advised motorists to use alternative routes to access the area.
Meanwhile in Hampshire, several drivers had to be rescued from cars by firefighters.
At 11:48 crews from Fareham and Cosham were called to assist with a car which had become stuck in deep water in a ford on Purbrook Heath Road on Portsdown Hill, near Purbrook, Waterlooville. Water running off from nearby fields had entered the vehicle and was at seat height when the emergency services were alerted. Firefighters successfully rescued the male occupant and lead him to safety at 12:24.
Mick Crennell Area Manager for Community Safety said: ”Crews carried out a risk assessment, established that there was saveable life and took swift action to conduct this recue. This incident high lights the dangers of attempting to drive through deep water and it gives an indication of how quickly the situation can change and become life threatening.
‘Your vehicle may be swept away or become stranded. Vehicles can float away in just two feet of water. If your vehicle stalls, leave it immediately if safe to do so and seek higher ground. Do not travel in heavy rain storms unless absolutely necessary.’
At 14:24 crews from Fareham and Droxford were called to assist with a car which had become stuck in floodwater on Portchester Lane, Southwick.
The vehicle was partially submerged and two people, one registered disabled and one elderly, were trapped inside. The Hampshire Fire and Rescue crews pushed the car clear of the deep water. The two people were then treated for shock and cold.
The same crews were then called to assist another car stuck in floodwater in Boarhunt Road, just half a mile from the previous incident, at 15.45. Two people were again rescued from the vehicle by the water rescue teams.
Elsewhere, crews from Lyndhurst and Brockenhurst were mobilised to assist a driver stranded in water near the Balmer Lawn Hotel in the New Forest.
At 09:46 Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service were called to Milton Road in Waterlooville at reports of flooding and alerted the matter to highways department at Havant Borough Council
One crew from Horndean Fire Station assisted at two flooded properties at Castle Road, Rowlands Castle between 10:04 and 11:19
Crews were also called to reports of flooding at Tesco in the High Street, Cosham which had been caused by a blocked drain. The store proceeded to deal with this.
A blocked drain at Bramdean Drive in Leigh Park, Havant caused flooding where we gave advice to the occupant 10:13.
In Waterlooville at 10:24 crews were called to flooding at Chaucer Close and gave advice.
At 10:42 one fire appliance and the special equipment unit from Cosham Fire Station were called to assist with flooding at Portsdown Primary School in Wymering.
They attended a flooded property and gave advice to a resident at Woodlands Avenue in Emsworth. At 11:23.
Firefighters from Winchester also attended the Union Jacks restaurant on the High Street in Winchester to help pump a heavy load of water from the roof.
Hampshire firefighters also assisted colleagues from West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service over the border in West Sussex with seven separate flooding incidents.
With more heavy rain predicted the fire service is reminding the public that the emergency services will be very busy, only call for immediate assistance if there is a risk to life or serious property or environmental damage.
Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service urges the residents of Hampshire to follow these tips to stay safe and reduce unnecessary call outs for the emergency services:
Safety tips out and about
Motorists should not attempt to drive through flooded roads or fords. The water is often deeper than it looks and may be moving quite fast. Your vehicle may be swept away or become stranded
Do not attempt to walk through flooded areas. Even shallow water moving fast can sweep you off your feet and there may be hidden dangers such as open drains, damaged road surfaces, submerged debris or deep channels; these can cause serious injuries or even death.
Children should not be allowed to play in flood water, which can become contaminated with sewerage and chemicals
Do not smoke, eat or drink whilst in contact with floodwater and always wash your hands afterwards.
Keep an eye on weather reports on local television or radio news channels.
Do not travel in heavy rain storms unless absolutely necessary.
Safety tips at home
It is the responsibility of property owners to take appropriate action to protect their property from flooding.
Ring Floodline on 0845 988 1188 for advice.
Householders who do suffer general domestic flooding are asked to contact their insurance companies and not the fire service.
Following a flood in your home, make sure all electrical circuits are fully dried out and checked by an electrical engineer before switching back on.
Look after your neighbours. People have been known to suffer from hypothermia after their homes have become flooded with cold rainwater even in the summer time.
A supply of sandbags is recommended if you know you are at risk of flooding, and these are available from builders’ merchants. Those made with polyester are preferable if they are to be stored for long periods. Use sandbags for protecting doorways and low level vents.
Piped sections of watercourses under driveways should be kept clear using rods. Watercourses or ditches should be kept clear and foliage cut back.
Anyone who has a cellar that may be vulnerable to flood should contact Hampshire County Council on 0845 603 5633 to see if an alternative discharge point can be arranged – ducting to a regular watercourse for instance.
If flood water is about to enter your home:
Turn off gas, electricity and water supplies if it’s safe to do so – but do not touch sources of electricity when standing in flood water!
Disconnect any equipment that uses water (like washing machines and dishwashers).
Put plugs in sinks and baths, and weigh them down with a sandbag, a pillow case or plastic bag filled with garden soil or a heavy object.
Be prepared to evacuate your home, and have a bag with essential items ready:
Copies of your home insurance documents
A torch with spare batteries
A wind-up or battery radio
A fully charged mobile phone
Warm, waterproof clothing and blankets
A first aid kit and prescription medication
Bottled water and non-perishable food for you and your pets
List of important contact numbers
Leave your home if the emergency services say so. Refusing to leave on their advice will put you, your family and those trying to help you at risk. Remember to lock up your property.
Go in, stay in, tune in – regularly check the TV news, teletext, local radio and newspapers for the latest information from the emergency services and your local council.
For further advice and information on local flood warnings contact the Environment Agency Floodline on 0845 988 1188 or visit www.environment-agency.gov.uk.
To report weather related issues on highways call Hantsdirect on 0845 603 5633.
You can also get further advice and information by visiting www.hampshireprepared.co.uk.