Storm Ciara: Residents battle to save homes from floodwaters

Appleby flooding Image copyright Owen Humphreys
Image caption Residents in Appleby were fighting to keep floodwaters at bay

Residents in parts of Cumbria have been battling to save their homes from floodwater after strong winds and heavy rain brought by Storm Ciara.

Appleby was one of the worst-hit areas after the River Eden swamped the town.

The River Kent in Kendal also rose significantly and was close to reaching the top of Stramongate Bridge arches.

Elsewhere, areas including Shap, Keswick and Ambleside all saw flooding as 151.8mm (6ins) of rain fell in the county in 24 hours.

In Appleby police and fire crews rescued a person who fell 20ft (6m) down an embankment towards the river. They were not seriously hurt.

Mountain rescue teams went to the aid of campers who became stranded at a flooded caravan park in Keswick.

Electricity North West said at one point 1,500 people were without power in west Cumbria. It said because of high winds some may not be reconnected until Monday.

More on Storm Ciara

A Met Office amber warning for wind was in place for most of south Cumbria until 21:00 GMT.

There have been no reports of serious injuries.

Image copyright Owen Humphreys
Image caption Residents in Appleby were using flood prevention measures to keep the water out
Image copyright Owen Humphreys
Image caption Appleby has been one of the worst hit areas in Cumbria
Image copyright Owen Humphreys
Image caption Much of Appleby found itself under water
Image copyright Met Office
Image caption Amber wind warning for south Cumbria
Image copyright Northern
Image caption Water on the line at Shap Beck caused delays

Transport has also been disrupted throughout North West England, with every rail firm cancelling or reducing scheduled services.

Northern said no trains were running between Barrow and Carlisle until at least Monday.

Services between Cumbria and the North East and North Yorkshire were also hit by flooding.

More than 20 flood warnings were in force in Cumbria.

Keswick Mountain Rescue Team said 12 volunteers were involved in the rescue of campers whose vehicles had become stranded in floodwater at a caravan park in Keswick at about 03:00 GMT on Sunday.

No-one was hurt, but it took a dozen volunteers more than two hours to clear a way out for most of those stuck. Some vehicles had to be abandoned.

The town's rugby club was also flooded and volunteers were drafted in to clean the clubhouse.

The Great North Air Ambulance said its base at Langwathby was flooded for a time which meant its rescue helicopter was temporarily unavailable.

Image copyright KMRT
Image caption Keswick mountain rescue volunteers spent more than two hours aiding stranded campers
Image copyright GNAA
Image caption The Great North Air Ambulance was put out of action by flooding at its Cumbria base

Newsagent David Anderson said his shop in Main Street, Shap, had been flooded.

He said: "There's a significant amount of water which is going right down the street.

"We've got two lads trying to mop it out and sandbags to try and prevent water getting to our living accommodation."

Emergency services went to the aid of some drivers that were caught out by flooding at Cliburn Hill, near Penrith.

No-one was reported as injured.

Image copyright Cumbria Police
Image caption Police went to the aid of stranded vehicles at Cliburn Hill
Image copyright Pete Savin
Image caption The River Kent in Kendal at Stramongate Bridge
Image copyright @DrewLucas4
Image caption This is a road in Ambleside, Cumbria - flood warnings have been issued around the UK

Cumbria Police said a number of roads were closed due to flooding and fallen debris, including:

  • A591 between Whitecross Bay Caravan Park and Chestnut Hill in Keswick
  • A592 between Newby Bridge and Bowness
  • A65 at Devil's Bridge due to a fallen tree
  • The Sands area of Appleby

A spokesman added: "Drivers are asked to make sure their cars are ready and legal to drive in these treacherous conditions.

"Please forward plan any journey, affording extra time to deal with slower travel times and the additional hazards of wind and surface water which are present."

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