March 12 2014 Latest news:
Thursday, December 5, 2013
Motorists have been warned not to travel along coastal routes overnight as fears mount the worst tidal surge for nearly six decades could hit East Anglia.
A combination of high tides, low pressure and gale-force winds has put communities on red-alert in the region, with concerns raised sweeping floods could be as severe as those in 1953 when coastal areas were devastated across eastern England.
The AA’s specialist severe weather team, AA Special Operations, is being deployed in the region to help businesses and residents combat the storm.
Darron Burness, head of the AA’s flood rescue team, issued a warning over the “deceptively dangerous” and “powerful” moving flood water.
He said the firm is working with the Environment Agency and the emergency services to provide support.
He also urged homeowners and drivers to take seriously the warnings of flooding caused by tidal surges after claiming a third of flood-related deaths involve a vehicle because drivers take “unnecessary risks”.
“I would particularly warn motorists to avoid coastal routes where the combination of high winds and flooding with sea water will be life-threatening,” he said.
“Coastal flooding is particularly dangerous because of the risk of high waves and very fast-moving water.
“Moving flood water is powerful, relentless and deceptively dangerous. A foot or 30cm of moving water can float your car while a tidal surge could carry your vehicle into the sea – so just stay out.”
Motorists that must venture on to the road are advised to take a fully-charged phone and warm, waterproof clothing.
An AA spokesman added: “Plan your journey, don’t attempt to drive down roads that have been closed due to flooding, avoid fords and check both weather and traffic bulletins regularly, remembering that some exposed roads or bridges may be subject to closures because of floods, high winds or fallen trees.”