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Stormy weather impacts continue across the North West

As further heavy rain is expected to cross the North West over the next 24 hours, the Environment Agency is warning that flood risk continues with the impacts of stormy weather continuing to be felt.

Further heavy and persistent rain is expected over the course of Sunday evening and during Monday morning. Rain will fall on saturated catchments where river levels are already high and this could lead to minor flooding. River levels remain high and ongoing, low risk river flooding is probable today and into early next week.

The Environment Agency is urging people to check their flood risk and remain prepared to take action as the situation changes.

Keith Ashcroft, Area Director for the Environment Agency said: “Across Cumbria and Lancashire we currently have a number of flood alerts and warnings in place. This next band of rainfall and wintery conditions could see some low lying roads, parks and some isolated properties being affected.

“We are expecting further rainfall overnight and into Monday morning. Additional rain is also forecast further into early next week. If the forecast remains as it is at present, additional flood alerts and warnings could be issued over the coming days. Some flooding impacts are possible due to current ground conditions and river levels.

“During Storms Ciara and Dennis, our flood defences protected a vast amount of properties across Cumbria and Lancashire. Once again this weekend our incident rooms have been open overnight monitoring river levels and issuing flood alerts and warnings as needed. Our teams have also been out on the ground operating our flood defences, clearing grids, removing blockages and maintaining river flows. We have also deployed temporary defences in Ribchester and Billington and have additional pumps on standby across Cumbria and Lancashire, including at Appleby and parts of Carlisle, should they be needed.

“As always, we advise people are prepared for flooding and know their risk. Visit www.gov.uk/flood or call Floodline on 0345 988 1188 for advice on how to prepare and sign up here for flood warnings. We also advise people to stay away from swollen rivers and urge people not to drive through flood water.”

There are currently 1 flood warning meaning that flooding is expected; and 20 flood alerts, meaning that flooding is possible, in places across Cumbria and Lancashire. There are no severe flood warnings, meaning there is no immediate risk to life. We expect to be issuing more flood warnings over the next 24 hours and we urge communities to keep up to date with the latest information.

England has already received 141% of its average February rainfall so far with some areas experiencing a month’s worth of rain in 24 hours. River levels have exceeded existing records across the country. The Rivers Ribble, Calder and Derwent are among the many rivers where records have been broken due to continuous wet weather in the area.

Since the start of Storm Dennis, across the country over 1,000 Environment Agency staff have been mobilised on the ground to operate flood defences and temporary pumps, clear debris from rivers, inspect damaged flood defences and make repairs. Community information officers are also out supporting affected communities offering advice and assistance. Environment Agency operational teams have put up more than 6km of temporary flood barriers across the country and flood defences have protected nearly 25,000 properties from the ongoing impacts of Storm Dennis.

This will be the third weekend of exceptional river levels and stormy weather; with the effects of climate change, we need to prepare for more frequent periods of extreme weather like this. People need to be aware of their flood risksign up to flood warningsmake a flood plan and not to drive or walk through flood water.

The public can keep up to date with the latest safety advice, call Floodline on 0345 988 1188 or follow @EnvAgency on Twitter for the latest flood updates.

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