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Environment Agency issues south west flood warnings

By citizennick  |  Posted: November 20, 2012

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WEATHER warnings have been issued by the Environment Agency as heavy rain is expected to continue across the region this week.

With the heavy rain falling on already saturated ground, Gloucestershire is one of eight counties at risk of rivers and groundwater flooding.

Strong winds are also forecast to increase the risk of surface water flooding as wind-blown leaves and debris could block drains, the government agency warned.

The Citizen's weather expert Ian Thomas says the signs are for more heavy rain tonight.

"Wednesday will get drier as the day goes on, the afternoon is the best time to get out and about. Unfortunately another band of heavy rain moving in from the south west is due overnight and that could bring up to 1.5ins in places.

"We've had a quarter of an inch of rain in the last 24 hours so this won't help the sodden ground. Temperatures are going to remain mild at around 11-12C. "It is looking better into the weekend and a bit drier but it gets interesting into the first week of December.

"It looks like it could get bitterly cold then, with below zero temperatures overnight and daytime temperatures not getting much warmer. It's too early yet to see if that weather pattern will bring any snow."

Environment Agency teams have been mobilised to check on flood defences, clear river blockages and monitor water levels.

The agency is urging people to keep up to date with the latest warnings online or sign up to its free flood warnings service.

The Met Office said it had weather warnings out for south west England and south east Wales, as well as western Scotland, over the next few days.

The first weather warning is for heavy rain in the South West and south east Wales.

A spokesman said: "We are looking at 15-30mm (0.6-1.2 inches) quite widely across that area and up to 40mm (1.6 inches) in the worst-hit areas.

"There's pretty saturated ground following the rain around today, so there's the possibility of seeing some localised flooding."

He also said there was a weather warning for Thursday for south western England and south east Wales, with a band of rain coming through of 20-40mm (0.8-1.6 inches) and up to 60mm (2.4 inches) in the worst-hit areas, and winds with gusts of up to 50-60mph.

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