Government warns the South West, the Midlands and the North of England over fresh risks of flooding

25th January 2016


High spring tides and strong winds could cause a flood risk along the South West and North West coasts the Environmental Agency has warned.

It addition it said heavy rainfall could mean river flooding in the North, Midlands and the South West.

Rivers and areas already hit by record river levels throughout the wettest December on record, including Cumbria, Lancashire and Yorkshire, are likely to be at risk, with the potential for very heavy rainfall inundating drains and making river levels rise.

Residents are being urged to check their flood risk, be prepared for flooding and be cautious if travelling, particularly on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The main areas at risk include communities in Cumbria, Lancashire, Yorkshire, the Midlands and the South West as well as central southern England.

There is also the possibility for some flooding along the rivers Severn and Wye as rainfall causes river levels to rise. The Environment Agency may deploy temporary barriers in some areas to reduce the flood risk to people and property.

The latest estimates suggest the final amount Association of British Insurers members will spend on customers affected by flood damage is likely to be around £1.3bn.

Environment Agency teams have been helping communities recovering from the severe floods, which hit Cumbria, Lancashire and Yorkshire last month. Repairs to a breached flood bank along the River Douglas at Croston are due to be completed this week.

As well as working closely with emergency services, teams from the Environment Agency will be working 24/7, checking and maintaining flood defences, clearing blockages in watercourses and monitoring river levels.

Chris Wilding, national flood duty manager at the Environment Agency, said: “Heavy rainfall brings the risk of flooding on Tuesday and Wednesday across the south west, Midlands, Cumbria, Lancashire and Yorkshire, with the potential for high waves along South West and North West coasts.

“We will issue flood warnings and alerts where necessary as rivers respond to the rainfall, which could also inundate drains, so people need to be ready for flash flooding in some places.

“We urge people to check their flood risk, prepare for flooding, follow the advice from emergency services and never risk driving through flood water.”

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