Agency warns of more flooding

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THE Environment Agency is preparing for further significant rainfall across the South East this afternoon and overnight (Monday 11/Tuesday June 12).

There are currently two flood warnings and 37 flood alerts in force for rivers across the region, meaning that flooding is possible.

The flood warnings have been issued for the River Mole in West Sussex at Charlwood, Hookwood, Sidlow, Leigh and Betchwood and residents are advised to prepare for flooding.

More heavy rainfall of up to 20 to 25mm is still expected across the South East and the agency is urging residents to be aware of the risk of further surface water flooding, from overwhelmed drains.

Motorists are urged to stay out of dangerous flood water and not to attempt to drive through it.

Flooding has been reported in many parts overnight, including Littlehampton in West Sussex, following heavy and persistent rain.

Some parts have seen between 30-50mm of rainfall, with Bognor in West Sussex seeing up to 65mm since yesterday evening.

Environment Agency crews spent the weekend and today clearing trash screens, closing flood gates, operating flood storage areas, removing debris from known hotspots and warning and informing the public about the possibility of flooding over the weekend.

Teams are now monitoring river levels and the weather front ahead of the predicted rainfall this afternoon and this evening.

Howard Davidson, Environment Agency South East regional director, said: “Our thoughts are with the communities who have been affected by flooding over the past few days and we urge everyone to remain vigilant ahead of further predicted rainfall.

“Our teams have been working round the clock throughout the weekend and today to ensure our flood defences remain intact and protect people. We continue to monitor river levels, check and operate flood defences and remove any blockages that may increase the risk of flooding.

“Our Floodline Warnings Direct service has kept those affected informed and allowed them time to prepare if the weather worsened. We urge people to check the Environment Agency website for the latest situation and to sign up to flood warnings for your local river.”

Floodline Warnings Direct sends messages directly to those signed up when flooding is possible in the areas where they live.

Warnings issued to homes and businesses by phone and text message includes localised information about potential flood risk from rivers and the sea, with clearer advice on actions to take to help safeguard lives and property.

Prepare your property for flooding by buying and installing flood products in advance. Householders and businesses can also monitor rising water levels during a potential flood at over 1,700 river and coastal locations across England and Wales online at http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/riverlevels.

Over five million people in England and Wales are at risk from flooding from rivers and the sea.

Those in flood risk areas should sign up to the Environment Agency’s free flood warning system – the most immediate and localised source of information on flooding – by calling 0845 988 1188 or visiting www.environment-agency.gov.uk/flood.