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Flood threat remains into Christmas Eve in UK

Updated: 2012-12-24 10:50
( Xinhua)

LONDON - Christmas mood has been damped in Britain with hundreds of flood alerts and warnings put in place across the country after days of heavy rainfalls.

The British Environment Agency has issued about 160 flood warning for England and Wales, and 31 for Scotland.

Flood threat remains into Christmas Eve in UK

A man stands by his stranded vehicle in flood water at Milby, northern England Dec 21, 2012. [Photo/Agencies]

The Agency urged communities across South West England on Sunday to "remain vigilant as further heavy rainfall is expected this evening and into tomorrow".

The heavy rainfalls have disrupted transport for travelers in the holiday with traffic jams in several routes, and threatened properties in some areas of England and Wales.

Heightened flood risk remains across Cornwall, Devon and Somerset throughout Sunday and into Monday.

"One Severe Flood Warning, meaning danger to life, remains in place in Helston, Cornwall," said the agency in the statement.

Latest figures show that around 400 properties have flooded since Wednesday and the Agency has sent over 110,000 warnings to people at risk of flooding.

Flood defenses have protected more than 20,000 properties across England and Wales, including 4,000 properties in Cornwall.

"Floods have a devastating impact on peoples' lives, particularly at this time of year, and our thoughts are with those that have been affected." said Paul Mustow, Head of Flood Incident Management at the Environment Agency.

"Environment Agency flood defenses have protected more than 20,000 homes and our teams are continuing to work around the clock with local emergency services to keep communities safe," he said.

Andy Page, Met Office Chief Forecaster, said: "This will give 10 to 20 mm of rain quite widely across parts of southern Britain but South West England may see a further 30mm.

"It's important that people keep weather aware by staying up to date with Met Office forecasts and Environment Agency Flood Warnings during this period of unsettled weather, especially as they make their way to friends and family for the Christmas period," he said.

"We'd advise people in the areas affected to expect some disruption to travel and take precautions if they are in an area at risk from heavy rain and flooding," Page said.