Communities across the country are being reminded to stay alert to the risks of flooding in the coming days, as heavy rain gives way to showery weather this week.
Heightened flood risk remains across Cornwall, Devon and Somerset where the ground is saturated, river levels remain high and even small amounts of rainfall could lead to further flooding. Communities along large rivers such as the Severn, Ouse, Trent, Avon and Thames, are also urged to remain vigilant. These rivers remain high and are yet to peak in some areas, which may lead to further flooding of low lying land and roads.
Environment Agency teams continue to work around the clock monitoring river levels closely, and have temporary flood defences in place to protect properties along these rivers from flooding. Demountable barriers have been erected at Ironbridge, Bewdley, Shrewsbury and Oxford and mobile pumping equipment is in place in Devon, Humberside and on the Derwent. Emergency teams from the Environment Agency have also been working through the night to shore up defences, clear blockages from watercourses and pump out flood water from towns.
Latest figures show that around 470 properties have flooded since Wednesday and the Environment Agency has sent over 112,000 warnings to people at risk of flooding. Flood defences have protected more than 21,000 properties across England and Wales, including 4,000 properties in Cornwall.
River levels remain high
David Jordan, Director of Operations at the Environment Agency, said: 'Flooding is devastating at any time of year, but it is particularly hard at Christmas time, and our thoughts are with those who will be out of their homes over the festive period.
'Although the rain is set to ease a little in the coming days, the ground is still very wet and river levels remain high, so we would ask people to keep up to date with the latest warnings and stay prepared for flooding. We also remind people not to walk or drive through flood water – which can be extremely dangerous.
'Environment Agency flood defences have protected more than 21,000 homes in the past week and our teams continue to work around the clock to keep communities safe.'
People should keep up-to-date with the latest information, and sign up for free flood warnings, on the Environment Agency’s website or by calling Floodline on 0845 988 1188.