Essex and Suffolk flooding cuts off roads

School bus in flood water in Hessett, Suffolk
Image caption No pupils were on board this school bus in Hessett

Several roads in Essex and Suffolk have become impassable after heavy rain led to widespread flooding.

Essex Police said they had received more than 50 weather-related calls and the county's fire service reported more than 60 flood-related calls.

In Suffolk, passengers in a bus and a car had to be rescued after becoming stuck in water in Debenham.

The Environment Agency has issued flood warnings for rivers in both counties. Police said water on roads was "deep".

Both Suffolk and Essex police said some minor roads in the county had remained closed or impassable throughout the day due to the high water levels.

A Suffolk police spokesman said officers received more than 100 weather-related calls.

In Essex, flood warnings remain in place for the River Brain from Black Notley to Witham, the River Colne from Castle Hedingham to Halstead and the Bumpstead Brook at Steeple Bumpstead.

Surface water

Flood warnings have been made in Suffolk for the River Lark, the Rattlesden River, the River Box, River Brett and the Stour Brook at Haverhill.

Five flood alerts - where flooding is considered possible - are in place across Essex, with another five in Suffolk.

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Media captionJamie Monahan tried to drive through the flood after seeing other vehicles succeed

Many roads have been affected, with the A12 Kelvedon bypass in Essex closed for most of the morning. It has now reopened.

Police said roads in Coggeshall, Bradwell, North Weald, Finchingfield, Heybridge, Clacton, Horsley Cross, Colchester, Eight Ash Green, Great Tey and Great Chesterford had also been flooded.

An Essex Police spokesperson said: "A large number of roads have been affected by flooding and in some places the water is deep.

"The rain was heavy overnight and early this morning and there is still a lot of surface water on the roads.

"If drivers are confronted by a large pool of water on the roads they should avoid trying to drive through it and seek an alternative route."

The fire service in Suffolk said it had been "fully stretched" by the flooding, with the middle of the county heaviest hit by the rain.

It said its water rescue teams had been called to more than 10 incidents.

The flooding has also led to the closure of three schools in the county, with many vehicles left stranded.

Five further flood alerts are in place across the county.

On Tuesday, rail services and roads across Essex were affected by floods, while a primary school and nursery in Chelmsford had to close because of flooding.

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