UK floods: More rain and high winds forecast

Men climb in to a restaurant surrounded by flood waters in Worcester Thursday brought better weather for many places, including Worcester, but more rain is expected on Friday

A new band of heavy rain is expected to hit the UK on Friday, as engineers work to reconnect power supplies cut off by Wednesday's storm.

Forecasters expect the rain to reach the South West at about 06:00 GMT before moving north across the country.

But BBC Weather's Darren Bett offered some hope to flood-hit areas, saying this severe weather was "hopefully the last in a long line" to hit the UK.

Very high winds are forecast for Friday evening and Saturday morning.

Our forecaster said there would be rain for most of the UK on Saturday, with up to 40mm (1.5in) in some parts of south-west England, where many areas are already flooded.

This would fall as snow on hills in places including Wales, the Pennines, Northern Ireland and Scotland, he added.

High winds - with gusts of 60-70mph inland and up to 80mph on England's south coast - are expected from Friday evening until Saturday morning.

The Met Office has issued several amber and yellow weather warnings for rain, wind and snow.

Our forecaster said some showers and high winds were expected on Saturday, but Sunday should be "mostly dry" and next week's weather - while still "unsettled" - was not expected to be as wet or windy as in recent days.

Weather graphic for Friday Another storm is moving in from the Atlantic and due to arrive on Friday, say BBC forecasters
A house in the flooded village of Moorland in Somerset  The owner of this house in Moorland, Somerset, has built his own flood defences
Soldiers from the Royal Welsh placing sandbags around a house in Chertsey, Surrey Members of the armed forces are helping in flood-hit communities including Chertsey
Birds fly past a sign surrounded by flood waters in Worcester The River Severn has reached record levels in Worcester, and more rain is forecast for the coming days

In other developments:

UK storms and floods

5,800

homes flooded since December

130,000

homes lost power overnight Wednesday

  • 112mph wind gusts recorded

  • 319mm rain fallen in Thames Valley since mid-December

  • Wettest January since 1776

The Energy Networks Association said 26,410 UK properties remain without electricity following Wednesday's hurricane-force winds.

Spokesman Tim Field said: "The pylons and the wires themselves are very resilient to strong winds.

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"It is other airborne objects and debris - like uprooted trees - that cannot hold on in those sorts of 100mph winds. It is these things that are causing power lines to come down," he said.

Engineers were still working to restore power to customers who were still without it, he added.

A digger helps install large water pumps Two pumps brought in from the Netherlands have started work on the Somerset Levels
A plaque on a wall above flood water reads "On the 12th of February 1795 the FLOOD rose to the lower edge" in Worester, central England Flood waters in Worcester have exceeded the level seen in 1795, which is marked by a plaque
A resident pushes her bike through flood water in Staines-Upon-Thames Some people tried cycling through floodwater in Staines-upon-Thames

Weather information

Firefighters drive in a special vehicle through flooding in Wraysbury, Berkshire

Seventeen severe flood warnings are currently in force for parts of Berkshire, Surrey, Somerset and Gloucestershire.

Some parts of the Somerset Levels have been flooded for several weeks, while areas near the Thames in Berkshire and Surrey have seen major flooding in recent days.

The latest severe warning was for the River Severn at Alney Island, Gloucester.

The Environment Agency has also issued more than 300 less serious flood warnings and alerts, mostly in southern England and the Midlands.

Train services in parts of the UK are cancelled and some roads are closed.

Start Quote

Toilet

It is pretty contaminated. If possible you do not want to go near it. And if you do, wash your hands”

End Quote Lance Weaver Flood water contamination expert

It comes after parts of the transport network struggled to cope during Wednesday's severe weather.

Travel problems include the following:

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