Heavy rain and flooding continue to batter county

By Tim Clarke Sunday 25 November 2012 Updated: 25/11 22:18

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Buy photos » The River Severn is not expected to peak in Worcester until Monday afternoon.

AMBULANCE staff have made an urgent plea to drivers not to put their lives at risk by driving along flooded roads.

The plea comes after a busy night for the emergency services as yet more torrential rain caused the flooding of roads and some homes across the county.

West Midlands Ambulance Service revealed they had been called to deal with a remarkable number of 4x4 vehicles which had become stuck in flood water.

WMAS General Manager, Nathan Hudson said: “No-one can have missed the heavy rain and strong winds that battered the region overnight. However, despite this, we were called out to several incidents where cars have tried to pass through flooded roads, fords, and small rivers and got stuck."

“The net effect is that the occupants have become trapped in their vehicles and the emergency services have had to risk difficult and often dangerous conditions in the middle of the night to come and rescue them."

“It is quite simple - driving through flood water is inherently dangerous. When you start off you simply have no idea how deep it will be, whether there will be hidden obstacles such as raised man hole covers that could damage your car. Flood water can also be very fast moving and we have seen incidences where the levels of water rise very quickly, which can catch out even the most experienced drivers.

“People who attempt to pass through flooded roads are not only putting their own lives at risk, but also the lives of the emergency services staff who have to rescue them. A little bit of common sense from the public will ensure that no one’s life is put in any unnecessary danger."

“We would urge people to not try and get across flood water and instead take a short detour, rather than become trapped in their cars and have to be rescued.”

In Kempsey about 40 homes had to be evacuated this morning after one of the main pumps which form part of the village's new flood defences failed to work.

The Environment Agency has since repaired it and is continuing to monitor the situation with many of the residents having now returned to their homes to begin the clear up operation.

“In Kempsey around 40 houses and a caravan park containing 60 caravans were flooded," a ambulance spokesman said.

"Welfare checks were carried out by paramedics with the assistance of the fire service and SARA (Severn Area Rescue Association) who used specialist boats and equipment to make their way around flooded properties. Around 30 members of the local community were evacuated to a nearby community centre where hot drinks and shelter were available."

There are gowing concerns over the impact of the rising flood waters on the River Severn in Worcester which is not expected to peak until tomorrow (Monday) afternoon.

Worcester Racecourse and Worcestershire County Cricket Club's New Road ground - where a new Premier Inn hotel is currently being built- are both flooded.

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Buy photos» The South Quay has disappeared under the rising River Severn.

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Buy photos» Worcestershire's New Road ground is under water again. (s)

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Buy photos» Barbourne Brook has burst its banks at a saturated Gheluvelt Park.

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Buy photos» The playing fields at the bottom of Gheluvelt Park fall victim to the swollen waters of the River Severn.

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