UK

UK Weather: April Officially Wettest Since Records Began, Say Met Office

04/30/2012 05:41 pm 17:41:14

This month is the UK’s wettest April in records dating back more than 100 years to 1910, the Met Office said on Monday.

Provisional figures up to April 29 showed an average of 121.8 mm had fallen (4.8 inches) so far this month, almost double the long term average for April of 69.6mm (2.7 inches) and beating the previous record of 120.3mm (4.7 inches) set in 2000.

There are 36 flood warnings in place, including 20 in the South West and a handful each in the Midlands, North East and East Anglia. There were also more than 150 less serious flood alerts.

An Environment Agency spokeswoman said they remained on high alert for flooding into Tuesday across southern England but particularly in Somerset, Dorset and Devon.

"After a very wet weekend conditions have generally improved today, but further rain forecast for tonight means that there is still a risk of flooding across many parts of England and Wales.

"River flows are high after this weekend's rainfall and we are keeping a close watch on river levels as well as checking defences and clearing any potential blockages to reduce the risk of flooding," she said.

Over the weekend downpours and winds of up to 70mph in south-west England and Wales brought down trees, left thousands of homes without power and disrupted rail services, while low-lying fields and some roads were submerged.

Following weeks of drought warnings and hosepipe bans, Britain is back to its blustery, windswept best.

Parts of England and Wales were braced for more heavy rain and potential flooding after a weekend of storms left one person dead.

A man and a dog died when the car they were travelling in became completely submerged in "5ft of fast-flowing water" as it drove across a flooded ford in Hampshire.

And with up to 20mm to 30mm (0.8in to 1.2in) of rain forecast for southern England tonight, the Environment Agency is on "high alert" for flooding amid fears already-saturated river catchments will struggle to cope with more downpours.

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