UK in 'uncharted territory' after record floods, Environment Agency chief warns

18 February 2020, 22:40

Nine severe flood warnings remain in place across the country in the wake of Storm Dennis, with more wet and windy weather to come.

The “danger to life” warnings came after record levels of flooding, which has left hundreds of properties underwater.

The warnings remain along the Rivers Severn, Wye and Lugg in Wales and the River Trent in Staffordshire.188 flood warnings, meaning that flooding is expected, and 233 flood alerts, meaning that flooding is possible, are in place across the country.

On Monday, there were more than 480 flood warnings and flood alerts in place across England – the highest on record.

Worcester city centre was flooded after record river levels.
Worcester city centre was flooded after record river levels. Picture: PA

The River Wye reached its highest levels on record, peaking at more than six metres, with the Environment Agency (EA) describing levels as "exceptional" and residents in Hereford saying they had never seen anything like it.

Homes in Monmouth were evacuated as the organisation warned the river was expected to peak at 7.2 metres by Tuesday morning.

EA manager for Herefordshire and Worcestershire Dave Throup said the level of flooding is difficult to believe.

Mr Throup, who is from Worcestershire, tweeted on Monday night: "I've seen things today I would not have believed. Large parts of my home town and village are underwater tonight.

"This is not normal flooding, we are in uncharted territory."

Toby Willison, Executive Director of Operations at the Environment Agency, said: “Every home flooded is a tragedy for that family and our hearts go out to all those who have been flooded during Storm Dennis.

“Our teams will continue to work 24/7, alongside the police, fire and rescue, and local authorities, to reduce the risk of flooding and keep communities safe.

“We expect disruptive weather into the middle of this week bringing a significant flood risk for the West Midlands, and there are flood warnings in place across much of England.

“Operational teams are out across England today, We have deployed temporary barriers and are operating 90 pumps across the country.

“We are also ready to operate our large flood defences as required, and so far we have protected nearly 20,000 properties from the impacts of Storm Dennis.

“With the effects of climate change, we are seeing more frequent periods of extreme weather.

“It is important for people to be aware of their flood risk and stay safe by signing up for flood warnings, making a flood plan and remembering not to drive or walk through flood water – it’s not worth the risk.”

The family of Yvonne Booth, who was swept away by floodwater near Tenbury in Worcestershire on Sunday, said they had been left "devastated" after her body was found on Monday.

Members of the public are rescued after flooding in Nantgarw, Wales as Storm Dennis hit the UK.
Members of the public are rescued after flooding in Nantgarw, Wales as Storm Dennis hit the UK. Picture: PA

The 55-year-old, from the Great Barr area of Birmingham, was described as a "very much loved member of our family" in a statement from relatives, released through police.

The Met Office issued yellow warnings on Tuesday for snow and ice in Scotland, and on Wednesday and Thursday for more rain in south and north west Wales.

Chief Meteorologist Andy Page said: “Further rain will arrive on Wednesday evening and this is likely to become prolonged and possibly heavy over areas of high ground.

“For example, there is a chance that 60mm of rain could fall in parts of south Wales over 24 hours.

“With the ground already saturated there is a chance of further flooding, members of the public should check their flood risk and stay up to date with flood warnings from Natural Resources Wales, SEPA, NI Direct and the Environment Agency.”

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

x

'Miracle' as schoolboy, 12, 'lucky to be alive' after toppling from toilet of moving coach onto motorway

Exclusive
'I just had to disappear': Carol Vorderman shares how grief led her to runaway following death of co-star Richard Whiteley

'I just had to disappear': Carol Vorderman shares how grief led her to runaway following death of Richard Whiteley

Alan Hansan

Ex-Liverpool captain Alan Hansen discharged from hospital

Manchester Airport boss apologises after 'power spike' sees mass cancellations as he gives flight status update

Flights from Manchester Airport 'expected to resume' on Sunday as travel boss apologises for mass cancellations

The highest temperatures of the summer are expected this week

Yellow heat-health alerts signal warm weather for most of England as temperatures to hit 30C

Passengers have been queuing for hours at Manchester Airport

All flights from two terminals at Manchester Airport cancelled as passengers urged not to travel

Amanda Abbington and Giovanni Pernice

Amanda Abbington forced to call police after being bombarded with death threats from troll fans of Giovanni Pernice

Exclusive
Robert Buckland has split from the PM and Home Secretary

Senior Tory splits from PM and Home Secretary as he calls for those involved in betting scandal to be suspended

James Cleverly joined LBC for Sunday with Lewis Goodall

Conservative candidate who described Rwanda policy as ‘crap’ did so to ‘shock his audience’, Home Secretary says

Jay

Jay Slater's father and brother make emotional pleas for return of the missing teenager

Michael Gove

Betting scandal as bad for Tories as Partygate, Michael Gove warns

42C heat has hit Europe this week

Extreme weather hits holiday hotspots in Europe with 42C heat and ‘meteo-tsunami’ as Brits warned before booking trip

Live
Home Secretary, James Cleverly

General Election LIVE: Cleverly tells LBC Sunak is 'right' not to suspend Conservatives involved in betting scandal

Passengers have been queuing for hours at Manchester Airport

Passengers flying through Terminals 1 and 2 at Manchester Airport told ‘do not travel’ after huge power cut

Jay Slater had travelled to the Canary Islands for a music festival

Jay Slater's mum issues desperate plea after Spanish police reject help in search for missing Brit

Ukrainian President Volodmyr Zelensky has reportedly slammed Nigel Farage for his controversial comments about the West provoking the invasion of the country.

Zelensky says Farage 'infected by Putinism' as Reform leader doubles down on Ukraine comments