UK weather: More than 90 flood warnings in place as heavy rain continues to fall

Written by on 20/02/2020

More than 90 flood warnings remain in place across the UK, as heavy rain threatens those areas already saturated from this week’s weather.

As of 1.30pm, six severe flood warnings were in place in England, indicating a danger to life, on the Welsh border close to the River Lugg, River Severn and River Wye.

The Met Office has also issued yellow weather warnings for heavy rain in Wales, parts of southern Scotland and in the north west of England.

The fresh rainfall could hamper the relief efforts after last weekend’s Storm Dennis – which left hundreds of homes and businesses flooded.

Overnight, heavy rain fell across northern and western parts of the country, with forecasters warning it could continue until 3pm.

Shap in Cumbria saw 52mm of rain fall before dawn had broken on Thursday, a village which last year saw 120mm of rainfall across the whole of February.

In Capel Curig, north Wales, 54mm of rain fell across 24 hours, more than half what usually falls during the entire month.

The Met Office said that despite the continued downpours, relief is on its way.

Rain in western parts of the UK should clear throughout the afternoon and people can expect “sunshine and showers” later on, it said.

The forecaster added: “There could be some pretty tricky conditions on the roads, make sure you give yourself a bit more time with travel because there’s some fairly heavy rain around.”

Strong winds are also expected to strengthen on Friday, with people being urged to be mindful of how they go about their days.

So far in February, England has had 141% of its average rainfall due to the storms, with river levels in the Trent, Colne, Severn, Ribble, Calder, Aire, Wye, Lugg and Derwent all breaking new records.

Despite the floods submerging communities, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is yet to visit those who have been impacted by the weather – a decision criticised by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Mr Corbyn said: “In refusing to visit flood-hit communities, nowhere-to-be-seen Boris Johnson is showing his true colours by his absence.

“Failing to convene COBRA to support flood-hit communities sends a very clear message: if the prime minister is not campaigning for votes in a general election, he simply does not care about helping communities affected by flooding, especially communities that have repeatedly been flooded in recent years.”

Vic Haddock, whose home in Shropshire was one of hundreds flooded, has also urged the prime minister to visit communities like his.

Speaking to Sky News on Wednesday, he said: “I’m a staunch supporter of Boris Johnson… now I’ve supported him, come on Boris, come and support me.

“I’ll buy you a pint and we’ll have a chat about this and see if you can sort out the differences between the arguments around the council, world heritage, conservation etc, and find out who’s finally responsible, to give us a bit of aid.”

Speaking to Sky News’ Kay Burley @ Breakfast on Thursday, Business minister Nadhim Zahawi defended Mr Johnson.

He said that rather than taking a media “jamboree” to the flood hit areas, he is “leading the team as prime minister” and trying to get financial aid to those affected as soon as possible.

(c) Sky News 2020: UK weather: More than 90 flood warnings in place as heavy rain continues to fall


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