Cars left stranded after floods

EXTREME weather caused chaos this week when heavy rainfall resulted in flooding and damage. Across Sedgemoor the rainfall on

EXTREME weather caused chaos this week when heavy rainfall resulted in flooding and damage.

Across Sedgemoor the rainfall on Friday afternoon caused severe damage and resulted in hundreds of calls to emergency services.

Cars had to be abandoned in Kings of Wessex Leisure Centre in Cheddar as the water by the entrance was too deep. Instead of driving out, visitors had to walk through the neighbouring Kings of Wessex School and go back for their cars over the weekend.

Duty manager Alex Rainbow said: "There were about 20 cars stuck here on Friday night and three had to be towed away.


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"We have asked the county council before to make some proper drainage but nothing has been done and every time we have a heavy rain something like this happens."

Cheddar Parish Council chairman Peter Lythgoe, of Upper New Road, said: "From our house we could see snow on the Mendips and water running down the roads.

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"I have asked Somerset County Council highways to do something about Station Road because every time we get heavy rain it floods.

"I am very worried about public safety and this should be higher on the priority list.

"The water was running in a river down Wideatts Road and Draycott Road near the new estate as well. It really was awful."

The last serious flood in the village was in Cheddar Gorge in 1968, when cars were washed down the road.

The Environment Agency has also put rivers in the area on Flood Watch. Cheddar Yeo and the River Axe and their tributaries are both at risk from flooding.

An agency spokesman said: "It is important to be vigilant and take appropriate action when a Flood Watch is in force as flooding is possible and the situation could worsen."

Avon and Somerset Constabulary attended about 130 calls from 1-5pm on Friday.

A spokesman said: "Somerset has a lot of rural roads and our main job was sorting out highways. We tended to support the fire brigade in their work but it was them dealing with pumping out the water.

"The M5 was heavily congested on Friday but this may have been down to a lane closure further north in South Gloucester."

Avon Fire and Rescue and Somerset and Devon fire services were also inundated with calls relating to the flooding and issued safety tips for dealing with the problems, which can be viewed on our website.

For advice and tips on flooding call the Environment Agency Floodline on 0845 9881188.

* Send us your pictures and emails about the floods to Newsdesk@thewestonmercury.co.uk or log on to www.thewestonmercury.co.uk to see stories and photographs.

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