UK floods: The city that sank in the storm: Woman dies as 5ft wall of water drives hundreds from their homes

Making a splash: A refuse lorry speeds through a flooded road in St Asaph as the North Wales city fills up with water

Making a splash: A refuse lorry speeds through a flooded road in St Asaph as the North Wales city fills up with water

Photos

soaked

Soaked city: Shocked residents woke to police officers knocking on doors yesterday morning to tell them to leave their homes

Massive operation: North Wales Police, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, Welsh Ambulance Service, the North and Mid Wales Trunk Road Agency and the RNLI are working together to beat the crisis

Massive operation: North Wales Police, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, Welsh Ambulance Service, the North and Mid Wales Trunk Road Agency and the RNLI are working together to beat the crisis

National concern: David Cameron meets James Rice, in Buckfastleigh, near Exeter, and surveys the flood damage to his house

National concern: David Cameron meets James Rice, in Buckfastleigh, near Exeter, and surveys the flood damage to his house

Dirty floors: Musky Kendall, from Buckfastleigh, tell the PM how quickly water rose inside her house during the flooding

Dirty floors: Musky Kendall, from Buckfastleigh, tell the PM how quickly water rose inside her house during the flooding

Prime Minister David Cameron, walks through Buckfastleigh, near Exeter, which was hit by a flash flood last week

Prime Minister David Cameron, walks through Buckfastleigh, near Exeter, which was hit by a flash flood last week

John Curtin, of the EA, said: 'Further flooding is expected in the next few days and communities across the country, particularly in north-east England, North Wales, Northamptonshire, are urged to remain especially vigilant.'

The Met Office has issued yellow weather warnings – meaning 'be aware' – for North East England and Yorkshire & Humber.

The warning read: 'Whilst rainfall amounts will be much lower than of late, river levels are very high and further showers running into the area could exacerbate conditions locally. The public should therefore continue to be aware of the risk of ongoing flooding.'

Historic sight: View from the ancient ramparts of Warwick Castle, where the swollen River Avon has risen up the tourist attraction's walls

Historic sight: View from the ancient ramparts of Warwick Castle, where the swollen River Avon has risen up the tourist attraction's walls

Waterlogged: The water has covered Warwickshire's River Island, home to Britain's biggest trebuchet, and has flooded neighbouring fields

Waterlogged: The water has covered Warwickshire's River Island, home to Britain's biggest trebuchet, and has flooded neighbouring fields

Island in the storm: Tewkesbury Abbey is surrounded by flood water in Gloucestershire after the River Severn burst its banks

Island in the storm: Tewkesbury Abbey is surrounded by flood water in Gloucestershire after the River Severn burst its banks

From town to lake: The council in Tewkesbury has opened a rest centre at its offices and transport links are under enormous pressure

From town to lake: The council in Tewkesbury has opened a rest centre at its offices and transport links are under enormous pressure

David Boazman, who runs the White
Bear in Tewkesbury, spoke today of his anger with selfish motorists who
drive through the floods, washing the water into his pub.

FLOOD OF COWBOYS SWAMPS STORM-HIT AREAS

First there was a flood of water and now there are fears
there could be a flood of rogue traders in affected areas.

Police forces and trading standards bodies across the
country are warning victims of heavy rainfall not to fall for scams as people
try to take advantage.

In the past, cowboy builders have offered a range of flood
recovery services and help to people but the quality of work has been poor and
not all the work necessary has been carried out.

Cornwall Trading Standards issued advice not to deal with
people who turn up at the door without an appointment and always ask for ID.

The body also suggests getting a written quote for any work
to be carried out and only pay once the work has been carried out to a
satisfactory standard.

'The flooding hit the pub at about
7pm on Sunday,' he said. 'There was about six inches, but we managed to
pump and sweep most of it out. We got the level right down, but then
people drove past, sending it back up again. It’s just infuriating.

'This is a road that’s been closed by the police due to the floods but people still drive through.'

Homes
were swamped in a picturesque Yorkshire village today after its
multi-million pound flood defences were defeated by its ageing drainage
system.

At least 54 houses in Old Malton,
North Yorkshire, are at risk from a deluge which has created a
sewage-contaminated lake in the High Street next to the graveyard of the
village church.

Flood defences were put up to protect Malton and Norton area in 2002 after years of campaigning by residents who were flooded twice in 18 months in 1998 and 2000.

The
9.3m scheme did prevent the River Derwent breaking its banks but could
not stop the backlog of water bubbling up through the drains.

It
is so deep in the middle that firefighters had trouble keeping their
heads above water and dinghies had to be deployed to get from one end to
the other.

A row is
now looming as to why the sewage system was not upgraded at the same
time as the improvements were made to the river banks.

As manhole covers continued to give way under the pressure, the centre of Old Malton, a small community on the edge of Malton, was swamped by an estimated half a million litres of water (nearly 110,000 gallons).

In the South East, there were 22 flood warnings and 53 flood alerts this morning, mainly concentrated in the west of the region.

Rising groundwater levels are threatening to leave homes in Winterbourne Abbas, Dorset, under water.

Poor drainage: Firefighters wade down a street in Old Malton, North Yorkshire, where at least 54 houses are at risk of being swamped by a sewage-contaminated lake

Poor drainage: Firefighters wade down a street in Old Malton, North Yorkshire, where at least 54 houses are at risk of being swamped by a sewage-contaminated lake

An
EA spokeswoman said: 'There are intermittent showers, which we are
expecting to move away, but we are keeping a watching brief and
monitoring the situation closely.'

Residents in west Oxford were asked to be vigilant and prepare for possible flooding, Oxfordshire County Council said.

A
spokesman said: 'All property owners, particularly those who have
property in the floodplain and close to watercourses, are urged to take
action to protect property from flooding.'

The
local authority said it is possible some householders will be advised
to leave in the next 24 hours. Rest centres will be set up nearby to
accommodate people who are evacuated.

Up to an inch of rain was forecast for North Yorkshire, Teesside and County Durham, and parts of the South West have seen twice their monthly average rainfall during the last six days.

Rustic look: Historic tourist attraction Morwellham Quay, near Tavistock in Devon, is flooded with rainwater

Rustic look: Historic tourist attraction Morwellham Quay, near Tavistock in Devon, is flooded with rainwater

Councils in Gloucestershire even set up
relief centres on Monday night for families who were evacuated from their
homes as river levels continued to rise.

In North Yorkshire, all planned surgery was cancelled at the Friarage
Hospital in Northallerton after flooding threatened wards and operating
theatres.

Soldiers helped to distribute emergency sandbags in the county to protect homes from floodwater.

Forecasters said the rest of the week should bring drier conditions for most of the country.

But
they warned of further rain today followed by freezing temperatures in
the next few days, bringing the risk of ice on the roads.

North-west England and Wales again felt the worst of the weather last night, where winds reached up to 55mph.

Sleet fell over the Pennines with snow predicted in the Scottish mountains today.

Unprecedented: A man pushes a wheelbarrow through Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, where residents are try to dry off after the River Severn burst its banks

Unprecedented: A man pushes a wheelbarrow through Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, where residents are try to dry off after the River Severn burst its banks

Forecasters said the heavy rain would
soon abate but with some areas already saturated, any wet weather could
still cause problems.

Meanwhile,
freezing temperatures are expected to take hold of the UK over the next
few days, with snow forecast to hit many coastal areas.

Gemma
Plumb, a spokeswoman for MeteoGroup, said: 'Although the rain was
lighter last night than previous days, the rain fell on already
saturated surfaces adding to the risk of flooding.

'It
will become increasingly drier in most places as we go through today,
with just East Anglia and south east England holding on to the rain.

'/11/27/article-2238931-163B298B000005DC-608_964x525.jpg” width=”964″ height=”525″ alt=”Nightmare: The Severn at Tewkesbury was expected to peak at 4.8m this morning, its highest level since the mass flooding of 2007, when much of the county was under water” class=”blkBorder” />

Nightmare: The Severn at Tewkesbury was expected to peak at 4.8m this morning, its highest level since the mass flooding of 2007, when much of the county was under water

She added that the drier weather is
unlikely to mark the end of the heavy rain, with early hints that more
will return at the beginning of next week after a short respite for the
battered UK.

The
continued flooding risk comes after claims yesterday that hundreds of
thousands of homes may be left without flood cover due to a row between
ministers and the insurance industry over how future flooding bills
would be covered.

The
Association of British Insurers (ABI) had claimed that talks about a
'safety net' deal to ensure those in flood-risk areas can continue to
afford their policies were at 'crisis point'.

Main event; Rescue crews attached to rope work out how to save the scared animals

Main event; Rescue crews attached to rope work out how to save the scared animals

Great tail to tell: A horse is stranded in a field of deep water on the flooded banks of the River Rye between Malton and Pickering

Great tail to tell: A horse is stranded in a field of deep water on the flooded banks of the River Rye between Malton and Pickering

Environment Secretary Owen
Paterson said talks were ongoing – and that ministers were committed to
securing a good deal for both householders and the taxpayer.

Speaking in the Commons, Mr Paterson said it was too soon to quantify the full scale of the damage while the rain continues.

Pressed
to comment on the row with insurers by his Labour shadow Mary Creagh,
Mr Paterson said: 'Today’s story is complete nonsense. The
very first meeting I had outside my office after taking office was with
the ABI, we have had most constructive and detailed discussions with
them since.

'There was a
senior level meeting as recently as the end of last week. I’m looking
forward to receiving the ABI’s latest suggestions.

'We are determined to arrive at a
replacement for the statement of principles which provides universality,
which is affordable and does not provide a major burden on the
taxpayer.'

While that
is being built up, they want the Government to step in to provide a
temporary overdraft to cover any shortfall during intense periods of
flooding.

Chaotic: The A66 dual carriageway on Teesside remains closed as workers try to pump away the water after the North East of England was hit by heavy rain for a second day

Chaotic: The A66 dual carriageway on Teesside remains closed as workers try to pump away the water after the North East of England was hit by heavy rain for a second day

Mr Paterson said last night more than
900 properties had been flooded, including up to 500 in the South West
alone. He said evacuations may increase given the forecast.

The Environment Secretary offered his
thanks to emergency service staff, local authorities, the Environment
Agency and volunteers for their response to the floods.

Flooding maps on the Environment Agency’s website crashed as thousands of users tried to see if their homes were at risk.

Emergency workers said drivers trying to get through floods had risked their own lives and those of their rescuers.

Britain besieged: Map shows how the rain has fallen over the last week

Britain besieged: Map shows how the rain has fallen over the last week

In a Twitter message, Gloucestershire Police said: ‘If you are driving a 4×4 vehicle the road closures still apply to you.

'Properties are being flooded by waves caused by selfish drivers.’

Nathan
Hudson, general manager of the West Midlands Ambulance Service, said:
‘We have had to deal with a remarkable number of stuck 4x4s.

'Just because your vehicle has four-wheel drive, does not make it amphibious.’

The warnings followed a Twitter message from Solihull police, saying: ‘You drive a Honda not a Haddock! Your car can’t swim.’

In Warwickshire, three people became stranded on the roof of a 4×4 after deciding to go off-road driving.

Police said the men had shouted abuse at helpers who tried to come to their aid, but were eventually rescued by boat.

The AA has received more than 560 calls from drivers stuck in floods in the last two days.

Spokesman
Darren Burness said: ‘Unfortunately a minority of drivers continue to
have a misplaced confidence in the capability of both their vehicle and
their own driving ability.

‘One
of our flood rescue crews witnessed a man in Lichfield, Staffordshire,
who moved road closure signs and drove recklessly down a flooded road in
his 4×4 “for the fun of it”.’

Northamptonshire
Police said a pensioner had to be rescued after his car was trapped
under a railway bridge in floodwater.

A passer-by told police the water
had reached the car’s sun visors. Police rescued the man, who was later
arrested on suspicion of drink-driving.

The South West bore the brunt of the flooding last week, and Devon saw twice its monthly average rainfall in just six days.

In Keynsham, Somerset, a motorist in a
Land Rover saved the life of another man by pulling him to safety
through the window of his car.

The unnamed pensioner became stranded after driving into deep flood water and was spotted by David Dunn yesterday.

Mr Dunn, 35, and his son, Callum, 13, drove their Land Rover into the flood after seeing him floating down the swollen river.

They took him to the safety of dry land and, apart from being a little shaken from his ordeal, he was unharmed.

A
Nature Check report yesterday warned that flooding could only be
tackled effectively by considering the surrounding ecosystem, and in
isolation flood control could just be moving the problem downstream.

Experts
also warn not enough money is being spent on flood defences, and the
cash there is may not be focused on the highest priorities, such as
towns rather than agricultural land.

The
report called for more alignment between flood management and other
policies, such as protecting nature, and for a halt to building on flood
plains, unless vital and approved by the Environment Agency.

A
spokesman for the Environment Department (Defra) said the Government
had taken forward most of the recommendations of the Pitt Review of the
2007 floods, and that 'we are now better prepared than ever to respond
to flooding'.

VIDEO: Flooding devastates Wales after days of downpours…

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Video courtesy of Bill Brothers Productions

Video: North Wales flooding filmed from St Asaph Bridge…

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