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People trapped as floodwater surges through streets after river bursts banks

A Coastguard helicopter was pictured over the village of Laxey, on the Isle of Man, as floodwater from the Laxey River surged through the streets.

A Coastguard helicopter on Laxey football pitch on the Isle of Man amid flash flooding (Julie Graham/Twitter/PA)
A Coastguard helicopter on Laxey football pitch on the Isle of Man amid flash flooding (Julie Graham/Twitter/PA)

By Dave Higgens and Megan Baynes, PA

A helicopter has been brought in to help people trapped in houses on the Isle of Man as a river burst its banks causing “horrendous conditions”.

A Coastguard helicopter was pictured over the village of Laxey, on the east coast of the island, as floodwater from the Laxey River surged through the streets, leading to police declaring a “major incident”.

The new storms come as part of the north of England and the Midlands continue to cope with flash flooding following days of heavy rain.

Further heavy rain is forecast for later in the week when the remnants of Hurricane Lorenzo sweep across the UK.

Local police on the Isle of Man said on Facebook: “Glen Road between the upper and lower bridges has flooded severely. Several vehicles have washed away. Persons are trapped in at least three houses.

“Fire Rescue and Coastguard are on scene with fast water rescue teams.

“A major incident has been declared with all Govt agencies helping out.

“We are asking that any persons trapped go up stairs and monitor media.”

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Flooding at Laxey Harbour, Isle of Man (Ed Hutton/Twitter/PA)

The village, which is about four miles north of the capital Douglas, appeared to be worst hit, although police also reported problems on the coast road and in Onchan as well as a landslip on the mountain road.

The force said: “While we assess the full impact of the rain and flooding, we suggest that all non-urgent travel is avoided.”

One witness, Julie Graham, said on Twitter: “Coastguard helicopter on Laxey football pitch. Horrendous conditions, river has burst it’s banks, people trapped in their houses.

“The emergency services are doing an amazing job.”

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(PA Graphics)

The flooding on the Isle of Man came as the Met Off issued warnings of further heavy rain and thunderstorms across England and Wales.

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for Wales, southern England, East Anglia and the Midlands between 6am and 8pm on Tuesday for heavy showers and disruption caused by flooding.

Meteorologist have said the slow moving clouds on Tuesday could bring rainfall totals of as much as 1.6in to 2in (40mm to 50mm) in a couple of hours in some places.

Met Office spokesman Grahame Madge said: “This could lead to the potential for flash flooding quite quickly.”

Mr Madge said the heavy downpours will die out on Tuesday night, when a ridge of high pressure will see plummeting temperatures with the potential for a grass frost in some northern areas.

But he said a day of fine weather of Wednesday will then give way to further wind and rain as what is left of Hurricane Lorenzo – the huge storm currently threatening the Azores – lashes the UK from later on Thursday.

At 10.30am on Tuesday there were 70 flood warnings and 184 flood alerts in force.

Northern Rail said the Maryport to Carlisle line was badly affected, with replacement bus services operating in some sections.

It added that the line is also blocked between Hexham and Carlisle following a reported landslip at Wetherall.

There has also been flooding at Thackley, between Leeds and Carlisle.

A spokesman said: “Heavy rain and flooding is, again, impacting Northern’s ability to operate services this morning.

“Delays and short-notice cancellations are likely across the region as rain continues to fall on already soaked ground.”

PA

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