Wales flooding: First Minister praises rescuers' bravery

RNLI flood rescue team conduct a search in Aberystwyth
Image caption RNLI flood rescue team conduct a search in Aberystwyth

First Minister Carwyn Jones has praised the "impressive bravery" of emergency crews who carried out rescues as flash floods hit parts of mid Wales.

He described as "truly harrowing" the conditions residents and holidaymakers endured as 5ft (1.5m) of water hit villages in Ceredigion on Saturday.

About 1,000 people were moved to safety, many from caravan parks.

Mr Jones said ministers would work with agencies to ensure normality returned to communities as quickly as possible.

"Yet again, we have witnessed the impressive bravery of our emergency services," he said.

"It is thanks to the professionalism and dedication of both our professional and volunteer emergency crews that no lives have been lost.

"The Welsh government will now work with all agencies over the coming hours, days and weeks to help ensure normality is returned to the affected communities as quickly as possible."


Later on Sunday, Local Government and Communities Minister, Carl Sargeant visited Talybont to survey the clean-up operation, and to speak with those who have taken part in the rescue operation.

Mr Sargeant said: "We shouldn't underestimate the trauma that's affected many people in losing possessions.

"The main thing is we can work together to ensure we have normality returning to our communities as soon as possible."

About 150 people had to be rescued by crews, including RNLI volunteers, RAF rescue helicopter as well as over 100 firefighters and other emergency services personnel.

Caravan parks and villages near Aberystwyth were inundated by floodwater when twice as much rain fell in 24 hours than normally falls in the area in the whole of June.

The areas worst affected in the early hours of Saturday were Talybont, Dol-y-bont, Llandre, and Penrhyncoch - all in Ceredigion.

Machynlleth, in Powys, was also flooded and roads in surrounding areas were closed.

A flood warning remains on the River Teifi, at Lampeter and Llanybyther. Environment Agency Wales is providing flood alert updates online.

It has also published river level reports showing the highest water level was recorded at Llangorwen in Aberystwyth at 2.05m (6ft 7in) on Saturday afternoon. Typically it is up to 72cm. However it has been previously recorded at 1.81m (5ft 9in).

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