UK floods: Storm Frank threatens more problems

  • 29 December 2015
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Aerial view of floods in Yorkshire and Lancashire after heavy rain on Sunday

A fresh storm threatens to bring more flooding to parts of the UK.

Storm Frank is due to sweep in from Tuesday evening, with Cumbria and south and central Scotland at most risk.

December has already seen communities in Cumbria, Lancashire, Greater Manchester and Yorkshire swamped by rising waters.

Prime Minister David Cameron has defended government spending on flood defences after the devastation across northern England.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Soldiers have been deployed to help shore up flood defences in York

Weather warnings

There are already nine severe flood warnings - meaning "danger to life" - in England and Wales, mostly around York which was flooded on Saturday.

The Met Office issued amber weather warnings - meaning "be prepared" - for rain in Strathclyde; Central, Tayside and Fife; Dumfries, Galloway, Lothian and Borders; and North West England for Wednesday.

There are also yellow weather warnings - meaning "be aware" - for rain for the rest of Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales, North East England and Yorkshire and Humber.

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency warned Storm Frank could bring further flooding to Scotland. Wales is also bracing itself for more rain.

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Storm Frank: The latest weather forecast

Future flood prevention

Floods minister Rory Stewart told the BBC that the government would spend £2.3 billion on flood defences over six years.

"There are going to be different parts of the country where people are going to be pushing for bigger schemes," Mr Stewart said.

"We have to try to be fair, we're putting a lot of money into this and we're making sure we're spending it in the most cost effective way we can."

The government has ordered a major inspection into how it is planning to prevent floods in the future.

Image caption Residents in York are trying to clean up - while preparing for more extreme weather at the same time

But the Labour Party's John McDonnell said that "a long term cross-party plan" was needed to help solve the issue of flooding and any review must include the views of experts on the ground.

Liberal Democrat party leader Tim Farron said extra funding was needed for flood defences, and said Prime Minister David Cameron needed to "show he cares about the North by following up his words with deeds".

Experts estimate the damage caused by flooding across northern England could cost more than £1.5 billion.

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