Residents advised to travel with caution after wettest January on record

PUBLISHED: 17:27 04 February 2014 | UPDATED: 17:27 04 February 2014

Following the wettest January on record further rainfall is predicted for the rest of this week – and with fields unable to absorb more water there may be run-off on to highways.

Essex County Council has issued the following advice:

• Before travelling check the latest road and rail updates as there may be disruption and extended journey times may be experienced. Information on highways in Essex is available at essex.gov.uk/highways and on Twitter at @Essex_Travel.

• If you encounter standing water drive with care and slow down, particularly as the wash from vehicles travelling through water can flood adjacent properties or cause other vehicles to stall. Your breaks may also be adversely affected.

• Where there is water on the highway such as a ford, this could be exceptionally deep and should be avoided.

• If you are in an area where flooding has happened in the past, keep abreast of the current weather forecasts and log on to the website metoffice.gov.uk for the weather warnings for your area.

• Check the Environment Agency’s website to see if you are in a location which is at risk from flooding at environment-agency.gov.uk.

• If there is a watercourse, trash grill or piped channel near you, and it is safe to do so, check that this is clear of debris or obstruction. It is a landowner’s responsibility to keep watercourses free-flowing, unless known otherwise. DO NOT approach unsafe structures or fast flowing water, even to clear blockages.

Contact details for agencies that provide 24-hour advice and general guidance on flood issues can be found at on the Essex County Council webpage essex.gov.uk/flooding.

Floodline has news of the latest flood warnings on 0845 988 1188.

Essex county councillor Rodney L Bass, cabinet member for highways and transportation, said: “I would urge residents to travel with caution leaving sufficient time to travel and ensuring their vehicles are best prepared to deal with traffic disruption.

“It is advisable before setting out to check the latest weather forecasts and travel updates on local radio and online.”

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