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‘The road literally exploded’ – Streets flooded as fire crews called in to help

PUBLISHED: 13:22 13 August 2020 | UPDATED: 18:39 13 August 2020

Haverhill town centre has flooded in parts due to the volume of rainfall. Picture: CHRIS BARBER

Haverhill town centre has flooded in parts due to the volume of rainfall. Picture: CHRIS BARBER

CHRIS BARBER

Fire engines have been sent to Haverhill following the intense rainfall this morning – with a flood warning issued for the River Stour.

Swan Lane in Haverhill has had intense rainfall this morning. Picture: PAUL WILLIAMSwan Lane in Haverhill has had intense rainfall this morning. Picture: PAUL WILLIAM

The flood warning says immediate action is required along the Stour Brook from Haverhill to Sturmer, and there is a possibility of some flooding of homes and businesses.

River levels have risen significantly due to the increased rainfall this morning and levels are likely to continue to rise.

Pictures and videos on social media show flooded streets, while Dan Holley a forecaster for Weatherquest, said “a rain gauge near Haverhill recorded 54mm this morning.”

Rhia Dourado, said: “The road in Swan Lane literally exploded as a transit van drove over it and lifted it off the ground.

“The flooding is really bad down here. Please be careful on the roads.”

Areas most at risk are riverside properties in Haverhill and Sturmer, and the A1307 and A143.

Suffolk Highways is urging drivers to be aware of emergency closures which have been installed in various locations around Haverhill due to flooding.

A spokesman said: “Our teams are working to make the locations safe, please avoid driving through any flood water and find alternative routes.”

The forecast is for very localised heavy showers and thunderstorms, which makes it very difficult to pinpoint.

The gov.uk website states: “Be ready to take action to protect your property if flooding is expected.

“Our workforce will be out checking flood defences and we will update this message as necessary.”

Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service have received a number of calls relating to bad weather in the Haverhill area.

A spokesman said: “This includes flooding due to the large volume of rain falling in a short time on dry ground.

“We have crews ready to respond, so call 999 if there is a danger to life.

“Do not drive through standing water.”

Police were called shortly before 10.55am to reports of flooding in Queen Street at the junction with Swan Lane, near to the police station.

Anglian Water, Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service and Suffolk Highways were also sent to the area.

Fire crews were sent from Long Melford, Clare, Haverhill and Wickhambrook.

Anglian Water said the flooding was down to the sheer volume of rainfall and was not due to a burst water main.

The rain is understood to have lifted a couple of manholes, causing the streets to flood.


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