Torrential rain causes floods across Merseyside

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Media captionRev Irene Whitaker helped rescue people from flooded homes in Seaforth

Torrential rain has caused flash floods across Merseyside, leading to major disruption for residents.

The Met Office said 14mm (0.5in) of rain fell in one hour in Liverpool. More rain is expected overnight.

Many main roads in Liverpool have flooded. Several had to be closed, including Aigburth Road, Queen's Drive and East Prescot Road.

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service said it had received about 150 calls from 1300 BST to 1630 BST.

A police spokesman said they had been called to numerous incidents over the course of the afternoon and evening.

Several residents were evacuated from their homes in the Knowsley Road area of Bootle and taken to a local church hall.

'Working flat out'

Residents living in and around the A565 in Seaforth had to wade through waist-deep water in their street.

One resident, Martin Norris, said: "I have lived in Seaforth all my life and I have never seen it flooded like this"

Liverpool City Council said at least 50 roads were affected and that it had been "working flat out to try to alleviate the situation".

Vicky Feeney, who lives in Deysbrook Lane in West Derby, Liverpool, said the flooding had become so bad on her road that waves were striking her property.

"I want to ask drivers to be extra careful, the water is getting so high it is actually hitting the sides of our homes and causing damage.

Image caption Public transport has also been affected, Merseytravel has warned

"I have even had to resort to putting wheelie bins out on the road in the water to show drivers how deep it is.

"They don't realise and end up skidding all over the place."

The fire service was in West Derby throughout Tuesday afternoon.

Watch manager Steve Gadsdon said at about 1700 BST the water seemed to be gradually subsiding.

He said a big clean-up would be needed as much of the water had mixed with sewage.

Public transport has also been affected, Merseytravel said.

Bus services are delayed and some trains are being replaced with buses.

Liverpool council also advised residents to avoid parks in the city as many are flooded.

Motorists in Wirral have been advised to avoid The Rake in Bromborough, which has also been closed.

Hosepipe ban continues

North-west England is currently subject to a hosepipe ban, following the driest start to the year in decades.

But water supplier United Utilities said there were no plans to lift the ban, despite torrential downpours.

John Butcher, regional suppliers manager, said: "We have had six months of below average rainfall and just one week of rain is never going to be enough to make the difference up.

"We wouldn't want to see the intensity of rainfall we have got now as it is giving us problems, but we need two or three weeks more rain before we can look at whether the hosepipe ban is still on or not."

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