Homes evacuated as swollen Thames keeps rising – UK Environment Agency has never issued so many severe flood warnings – Many areas have seen more than double their average rainfallPosted by Jim at Monday, February 10, 2014
10 February 2014 (BBC News) – Flooded homes along the River Thames are being evacuated and thousands more are at risk, with water levels expected to keep rising for the next 24 hours.
Residents in one Berkshire village say the scenes are from a "horror movie".
Fourteen severe flood warnings are in place in Berkshire and Surrey, while two remain in Somerset.
PM David Cameron, who is in flood-hit south-west England, said it was not the time to change personnel amid criticism of Environment Agency head Lord Smith.
Homes, shops, and businesses in the Berkshire village of Datchet are underwater and hundreds more along the lower River Thames, as far as Shepperton, are under threat, the Environment Agency says.
Several Thames gauges are showing their highest levels since being installed in the 1980s and 90s.
Fire crews, who have been rescuing people from their homes in Staines-upon-Thames, say they have never known waters so deep or a flood rescue operation on this scale. […]
In the Berkshire village of Colnbrook, resident Asif Khan said his whole street was under water, his house was flooded and his fridge "just went bang".
"It's something out of a horror movie," he said, adding that he was now about to try to evacuate with his two small children.
Hurst village resident Paul Palmer said sewers there were blocked and they have been unable to use the toilet since Friday.
"It's starting to back up into the toilet - it's like going back to the dark ages," he told the BBC. […]
The Environment Agency said it had never issued as many severe flood warnings and that many areas had seen more than double their average rainfall. [more]